Lead astray or a hike to the snow cladded lead mountain – Part 2

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Swedes attacking a defended Saxon position (Miniatures from Baccus)

With a little help to my friends

Twilight of the Sun King Rules

Nick Dorrell’s adaptation of the Twilight of the Sun King Rules I talked about in an earlier blog (see here) are now published by the Pike and Shot society.  I really enjoy these fast play rules that makes it possible to play large horse and musket battles during late 17th and early 18th century in a reasonable time. Basing is adaptable and the rules works at two levels standard/brigade and regimental scale. In the standard scale a unit represents brigade or its equivalent (2,000 infantry or 1,000 cavalry – so about 4 battalions or 8 squadrons). For the regimental scale a unit equates to 1,000 infantry or 500 cavalry.  I play the game in the regimental scale, as I do GNW where the battles tends to be smaller and I have more than enough miniatures to play in this scale, using two 60 by 30mm bases for a unit with a total frontage of 120mm per unit. This is the same basing I use for the Polemos, Maurice and the Might and Reason rules. Further the units can be classified as small or large to allow for the variation in units sizes during the period, e.g. to deal with smaller elite units etc.

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The rules are, to quote Nick from the Design Philosophy notes, “…radical, some would say reductionist, in their conception. It is based on the premise that during this time period, morale rather than numbers of casualties was the key to deciding combat and even the outcome of battles. Many wargames rules pay lip-service to this; however, these rules take the radical step of collapsing shooting and close combat into morale. This dramatically simplifies game play but does so, in the designers’ opinion, without significant loss of historical accuracy.”

The Rules as well as a Scenario book is now available from the Pike and Shot Society and can be obtained from them, http://www.pikeandshotsociety.org/, and other retail outlets.

The scenario book is called Louis XIV at War and features 10 battles – 4 of these are from the War of the Grand Alliance (1688 to 1697) and the other 6 from the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-14). Each scenario includes orders of battles and a map.

A second scenario book is being worked on and will cover the Great Northern War and the Ottoman wars.

There is a Yahoo group:

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/TwilightSK/info

and you can contact nick via wyreforestgamers@yahoo.co.uk

Collection Calculator

Another friend of mine, Peter Riley, came up with an idea for a Wargames collection calculator when he went to the Newbury show this year. As he walked and talked to gamers at the show it emerged from the many conversations he had is that we don’t know, in detail, what we have in our collections and what they are worth.  So to keep a good record of all the elements we have in our growing collections seemed a good idea.

A beta website has been set up here – http://collectioncalculator.com/ . Peter is looking for feedback on what you may think.

I think it is a brilliant idea and could be used to manage your collection, get an idea about its value for a sale or how much to insure your collection for. Try it out and if you like the general idea support it by letting them know how it can be improved.

In a recent Meeples and Miniatures episode the hosts discussed the issue about insuring your stuff when they were speculating what they would do if they lost their collection and got the opportunity to do it all again being given the full value from the insurance company. If you do not know what you have and are not adequately insured then this scenario could end it tears and not in speculation on what you would replace or not.

By the way Peter Riley is the author of a few sets of wargame rules, including the ACW rules Crisis of Allegiance and On They Came as well as the Franco-Prussian Wars rules Kommandant de Battaile and Kommandant de Armee. He is working on a few new sets including a colonial set called A Steady and Deliberate Fire.

Winter is coming

I have presented two Great Northern War battles at the Joy of Six show that took place during the winter season with snow and misery on the battle field – Fraustadt 1706 (with a mention in an earlier post here) and Gadebusch 1712.   I really like wintery landscapes having been brought up in Sweden, where minus degrees and snow is a constant for a large part of the year. It engulfs the land and when Spring finally comes it feels like the land has been subjected to some form of annual cleansing.

When I first did the Fraustadt Battle I was hesitant in “winter basing” the armies as I was going to do Klissow where I could have “re-used” a lot of the miniatures especially on the Saxon side. However the contrast between a wintery table and the rectangular zone of summer really annoyed me when I had finished the table and set up the bases on it.  So I got on with drybrushing all of the bases with white and then topped them up with some wintery tufts – it was worth the effort. Following the Gadebusch battle I now have fully sized GNW armies for the Swedes, Saxons and the Danes ready to rumble any time of the year.

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The Saxon forces at Fraustadt did stand and wait for the Swedes for a while but I do not think that it resulted in the grass growing, or that they had some Astro Turf ready to roll out. I agree with the fact that basing should make the miniatures stand out but this a little bit over the top!

So apart from the snow ventures above I have a passion, or perhaps compulsion, for the Winter War 1939-40.  It is a very interesting conflict and I went with the Baker Company Winter War 28mm Kickstarter a few years back – the project did not really go as intended and I only got part of what I expected. Instead I decided to go for it in 15mm and have recently completed enough to start playing some  Chain of Command with a Platoon with some options for each side (I will do a future posting for the Finnish and the Russian/Sovietic platoon).  I am also keen to try out the IABSM (I ain’t been shot Mum) rules from Company Sized actions. Both these rules are from the eminent makers of rules at Too Fat Lardies (Chain of Command here and IABSM here).

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Finnish Soldiers from the 1939-40 Winter War. The Light Machine Gun is the M-26 7.62mm Lahti-Saloranta.  The picture is taken from SA-kuva (Finnish Armed Forces Photographs) and you can find their webpage here.  This is a conflict to which the lead mountain has attracted permanent visitors from a number of scales.

So for IABSM I have a few options, (i) expand the 15mm platoons for Chain of Command, (ii) use the Pithead 10mm ones I bought a few years back or (iii) try out the 6mm Finnish from Heroics and Ros.

I bought a few test strips from Heroics and Ros from their Finnish Range and also a strip from the Snow/Ski Troopers.  I decided to paint these and base them to see how they would look like and put them on a 65 by 65mm base. I am pleased how they came out and I think it will work well for the IABSM rules (although I would probably use 25mm bases) – I hope you agree (Note one of the pictures show some 15mm miniatures from the Chain of Command Finns).  I used some snow flock mixed with Matte Mod Podge for the basing, it looks slightly better for real than in the photos.  I am going to do a winter company for the Finns, Russians and Germans as they did some combined operations with the Finns.  With this scale it should not take very long to complete a company worth of miniatures. It will look fantastic.

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I think I have to order some more from Heroics and Ros. For the Pithead stuff, well I have no problem with it staying on the mountain for now!  The 28mm Baker Company stuff I did get I will probably get rid off.

Not really Winter but cold as death

About 2 months ago I wrote about some new 6mm miniatures from Microworld Games (see here). I did not buy the Landsknechts this time but I bought the new duelists and peasants as well as a large number of zombies and ghouls for another little project I am working on (I am doing the Saga Revenants faction in 6mm when I have time). Anyway, I got them this week as it was a pre-order, and I really liked the look of the duelists and the peasants – some of these will be used for my Sharp Practice games. I could not resist painting up a little vignette on a 60 by 60mm base with some zombies controlled by a witch/necromancer (from Perfect Six)  attacking three witch hunters (the duelists) supported by a few farmers.  This is a homage to a roleplaying scenario I played when I was a kid (well at least a younger kid) and actually a Christmas present to a very dear friend.

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Ok next time I will get on with some Great Northern War stuff and the Towards Moscow Project / Keep on toysoldiering!

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Gadebusch 1712 from Joy of Six 2015 – the Swedes advancing over the frozen fields towards the Danes.

New 6mm Stuff, Painting Service and Shock Markers

Limited progress this week but an update of some new and upcoming 6mm ranges that caught my eye, some discussion on the TMT project and the enlistment of a painting service, a little diversion and reflection on 18th century warfare on TV & in movies, and some shock markers for Sharp Practice. 

New/Upcoming 6mm Ranges – Landsknechts, TYW/ECW and the Order of the Dragon

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Landsknechts – picture from Wikipedia (link in the text below)

I have to admit that a few new 6mm ranges have blown me away these last few weeks:

Microworld Games Landsknechts rangecheck them out here.  I stumbled across these when I was ordering something for my Saga in 6mm project. I am planning on doing the Revenant Faction at some point and needed some ghoulish looking creatures. Microworld  has a wide range of 6mm fantasy but these are, as far as I gather, looking pretty historical like the real Landsknecths.  Splendid!, based in the US, flat rate international shipping at $12 (excluding Customs and Charges if you live outside the States, but if you can overcome that this would be an impressive and colourful force to field).  I am very tempted to add a few of these to my next order even if I am not screaming for projects at the moment. The pictures are from Microworld’s webpage and they also have a few other new sets that may be of some interest.

 

Perfect Six Miniatures, that I have mentioned on several occasions on this blog, does not just sell fine scenic items but have a growing range of, mainly fantasy, miniatures. Their latest release is their Order of the Dragon Miniatures and they are really nice. They have just been released so I ordered a few packs. Again pictures from their webpage.

Baccus upcoming English Civil War (ECW) / Thirty Years War (TYW) range are presented here and here. Based on these snippets this, in my view, promises to be Baccus finest range yet.  It is not just the detail but the poses are phenomenal and I am more than sure that at some point I will have to get into this period and make a Swedish Army led by the Lion from the North. The pictures are from the Baccus page.  Baccus are also soon releasing more French Indian War stuff that I am very much looking forward too.

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Painting Service for my Great Northern War stuff

I decided to enlist some help in completing the Towards Moscow Trilogy (TMT) project (see the long and winding presentation of it here, if you have not read it yet) and have asked Marching in Colour (Painting service, with a link here) to paint a lot of the miniatures that will be used in the 3  battles. I have opted for block painted units that I will finish by applying some nut-brown ink and then some highlighting and basing – this way they will nicely blend into the existing collection.

I have had a previous experience of using a painting service that was ok, but I have to admit that I really like the way Chris communicates and deals with you as a customer.  I find his prices reasonable too.  The problem I have is that I have more ideas than I have time and I think I have already proven to the world, or at least to myself, that I can paint 6mm Great Northern war miniatures en masse.  This approach allows me to, in an IKEA like fashion, be directly involved in the production process and still have time to push on with all that other stuff.

With a little bit of luck I will be able to complete all the miniatures needed in the next year or so.  This will give me time to do some of the things that are currently not being done like the 15mm miniatures for the Winter War of 1939 between Finland and Russia and perhaps more importantly the Little ones Halo Ships and Battles stuff.

So in summary,  I will be outsourcing most of the Russians I have left to do and will also have some of the Swedish Infantry done by MiC. I have seen the first batch on photos and I am eagerly waiting for them to arrive.

TV and Movies

I have recently started watching the TV Series “Turn” that is set during the American Revolutionary War period. I was watching the 2nd series finale depicting the Battle of Monmouth Courthouse and although the number of men involved were reminiscent of the Battles in the Sharpe series, i.e. being very few men compared to the real deal, I really enjoyed it. It is not that often 18th century battles are depicted on the white or silver screen, with a few notable exceptions including Barry Lyndon, The Last of the Mohicans and the Sovereign’s Servant that incidentally is about the Battle of Poltava – the last breath of the Russian Campaign 1708-09.

I also had another go at the Northwest Passage movie with Spencer Tracy. Not as adventurous as my childhood memory had indicated. The portrayal of the Indians on both sides is not very flattering even for its time – it was made 1940 .  I would still recommend it and it serves part of the my background “research” for my Sharp Practice in 6mm project.  I have Drums along the Mohawk and an alternative version of the Last of the Mohicans to look forward to as well – when I have a few minutes spare. I also ordered the Broken Chain with Pierce Brosnan, based on a recommendation.

Sharp Practice Shock Markers

Talking about Sharp Practice, I did start making some shock markers for Sharp Practice in line with my discussion in an earlier post.  The design concept is reproduced below.

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Here is a picture that may be useful as well, adjust to the size of your washers, I did mine with 15mm washers.

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Step 1: Print out the sheet above with the right dimensions.

Step 2: Cut out the top parts and stick to the adhesive side of a Flexometal sheets (or any other sheet that is magnetic, i.e. contains some metal. I bought mine from Abel Magnets but you can also get them from other sources) – then cut them out carefully, as seen in the picture below.

Step 3: Glue on your shock/casualty markers – these are from the Baccus ECW and WSS range and will do fine for my purposes (as there are no specific ones for the period). It is difficult to see any detail at this stage. So trust me or come back next week and have a look at the painted ones.

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Step 4 – prime the shock markers and set aside to dry. As per usual I prime them in grey.

Step 5 – cut out the round dials (0 to 9) carefully

Step 6 – take your washers (these are of the flat/penny washer type with a hole in the middle) and stick a round label/sticker on top, turn it around and put a (Neodymium Disc) magnet inside, put another sticker on top, then glue on the dial (0 to 9) on the top using PVA glue. These steps are shown below. Put PVA glue on the top of the washer and on the top of the dial as well to seal the paper on using a brush. Do not be too aggressive and do not worry it will dry clear.

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Step 7 – let it dry and join together. As you may have guessed due to the ferrous sheet and the magnet the two parts stick together and the dial can be turned allowing you to set any value you want it tosm6 show.

Step 8 – They are now ready for basing and painting, but we did not get any further this weekend. I hope to be able to report on some more decorated markers next week.

/ All the very best

FIW – Sharp Practice in 6mm – Part 6 Inspiration and Some Progress

Braddock’s Defeat

I just finished listening to Braddock’s Defeat on Audible and ended up buying the physical book as well from Amazon as a reference copy.  This is an amazing piece of work by David Preston and I have not had so much enjoyment (reading a book on Military History) since I read Oskar Sjöström’s Fraustadt 1706: ett fält färgat rött.  The Fraustadt book unfortunately, as is the case for a lot of Great Northern War literature, is not available in English. But I digress…

If you are familiar with the French Indian War period of history you will have heard about the British General Braddock leading a expeditionary force, in 1755, through Pennsylvania to attack the French Fort Duquesne on the forks of the Ohio River. A smaller French Canadian force, led by the French Captain Beaujeu and supported by native Indian Tribes, had decided to seek battle before the British arrived to the fort and encountered and attacked the British at Monongahela (about 10 miles from what is now Pittsburgh).  It was the French Canadian resolve and ability to quickly get organised and use the terrain efficiently in applying woodland tactics that won the day.

“Historians have generally ignored French and Native perspectives on the 1755 campaign. The French were outnumbered, outgunned, and faced crippling supply problems in their Ohio Valley posts. They despaired of their inability to halt or slow Braddock’s relentless march. However, convoys of French reinforcements led by a veteran officer, Captain Beaujeu, came to Fort Duquesne after an epic 700-mile voyage from Montreal, arriving only a few days before the fateful battle at the Monongahela.  …..

A newly discovered French account from the Archives du Calvados transforms our understanding of French and Native American leadership and tactics at the Battle of the Monongahela. The French commander, Captain Beaujeu, sent out Native scouts who brought him exact intelligence on the location and disposition of the British. Dividing his force into three parallel columns, Beaujeu organized a frontal attack on the British column with his Canadian troops. He instructed the Indians to spread out in the woods on the right and the left, and to withhold their fire until he had engaged the British. The Monongahela was neither a meeting engagement nor an ambush, but a well-planned and executed French and Indian attack on a vulnerable British column. “

Ten questions about Braddock’s Defeat by David L. Preston, accessible here.

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Painting showing a contingent of French and Indians attacking General Braddock, in the background, who is falling from his horse being assisted by Major George Washington, the future first president of the United States of America – one of many key characters of the American revolution that were involved in this expedition. (Painted by Edwin W. Deming, the painting forms part of the Wisconsin Historicial Society’s collection)

I really enjoy the story telling aspect of real history and to paraphrase Dan Carlin, “it has destroyed fiction for me” (go and listen to one of his Hardcore History Shows if you have not done so yet!, here is a link).  However being factual, intellectual and educational does not need to be boring and can instead be truly inspirational and that is this book in a nutshell.  If you have any interest in the period, or military history in general, I suggest you get hold of this one.

I think a lot can be done with the skirmish rules I have (i.e. Sharp Practice, Musket and Tomahawks and  Songs of Drums and Tomahawks) but for the “larger” battles I am not sure what good rulesets are there that captures the flavour of not just the period but in the particular way the war was fought in this theatre. But then this was only a small diversion!

Crystal Palace and that very famous Battle

I was intending to spend the day at SELWG (South East London Wargames Group) show in Crystal Palace today, but the little one had his first rugby festival for the season and luckily, because I would be a really sad bastard otherwise, I actually prefer to see him play rather than going to a wargames show.  As it is very close to where we live we ended up going for the last 45 minutes on our way home – but the last part of a wargames show is very often like drinking a pint of lager that was poured two hours ago.  I did not take any pictures of the tables on offer, but there seemed to be a good collection – a nice ancient game with loads of pikes and a Doctor Who game caught my eye.  Next weekend (on both Saturday and Sunday) is the big event at Battle with the 950th Anniversary re-enactment of the Battle of Hastings. We are looking forward to this.

Supporting Cast, Real Estate and Markers

I decided to spend the little time I had available for diversions this week finalising as much of the painting as I could for the initial Sharp Practice stuff – so I and the little one could play a proper game in a not too distant future.  This, instead of getting diverted spending hours gluing small strips of spaghetti like last week (see my last blog entry here) I actually managed to get some of the more immediate and necessary stuff completed.

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My temporary “Out of ammunition markers” using crates from Perfectsix – I did a few more. “Resthouse” by Leven Miniatures. The bases are 9mm in diameter.
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Ammo markers for artillery (again made from PerfectSix materials).
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Mule Train from Baccus
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Barricades based on various items from PerfectSix
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As above but from a different angle
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Breastworks based on some old Irregular stuff I had lying around. Painted up really well!
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As above but from a different angle
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Holymen and Doctors for both sides – Pere Bleu, Docteur Bleu, Doctor Red and Father Red.
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Carts – Engineering, Water and Ammunition Carts

I was thinking about a scenario with the characters from a famous movie set during the French Indian War – and did the three little chaps below.  / Until next

3-guys

 

 

 

Lesnaya Part 4 – but mostly other stuff

Yet another week in a sunny, and this time also rainy and windy, France.  I thought I bang the drum for three of the places I visited with the family that may be of some interest.

Château de Talmont, Talmont St Hilaire, Vendée

Nicely situated on a rock that once was surrounded by a lake and the river Le Payre.  The Castle was originally built on the orders of William the Great, Duke of Aquitaine.  William actually was not that Great and lost a lot of his lands to Vikings and other french nobles. I am not that convinced we will see him as a warlord in future Saga supplements!  However from 1152, the Duchy of Aquitaine was held by the Plantagenets, who also ruled England as independent monarchs.  Richard I Lionheart (or Richard Coeur de Lion as they call him in France) is the most famous of the rulers of Talmont and he did a lot of alterations to the castle. The castle have taken some damage over the years but is well worth a visit and depending on the day some activities to keep the family entertained including some periodic games and falconry. You can read more here.

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Talmont Castle

 

Le Mont-Saint-Michel, Pontorson – Le Mont-Saint-Michel, Normandy

I have spent a lot of time in Normandy over the last few years going to the various WW2 sites (Pegasus bridge, the D-day beaches, Sainte-Mère-Église and seen the famous Church and visited the airborne museum to mention a few) and they are all amazing but there is a lot of older history that is also worth checking out.  It seems like it is directly from a Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying (WFRP) module. When I was standing on some of the viewing platforms on the top, with the wind blowing in whatever hair I have left, it did not take a lot of imaginary effort to feel like I was standing somewhere on the top of Minas Tirith in Middle-Earth viewing the hoards of orcs..sorry tourists approaching.  This island have been used since the 8th century as a centre for religious worship, defensive position and even as a prison.  Rich with history and to slowly walk along the small streets and passage ways up to the top and a visit the cathedral and the prison is a immersive experience that is not to be missed if you are in the region. There is a nice video showing off this amazing place here.

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Le Mont-Saint-Michel

 

Le Musée des Blindés, Saumur, Manche

This is a fantastic tank museum that, I personally, think is as good as the Bovington museum in the UK for us WW2 enthusiasts.  It is even better if you are into cold war stuff I have been told by reliable sources.  Here is a link to a video on YouTube showing a lot of the tanks and here is the official link to the museum itself.  I bought myself some German Tank Paints by MIG and I tried out the dunkelgrau on some early German Zvezda tanks I found in a shop in Cherbourg.  It seemed to work well.

What about the Lesnaya stuff?

As far as the Lesnaya project is concerned I had a little break from it last week. I did catch up with Nick Dorrell about it and we are good to go with the overall Towards Moscow Trilogy project I discussed in an earlier Blog.  It is very likely that, after Lesnaya, we will do a what-if-scenario where the Swedish army attacks the Russian Position at Gorki 1708 instead of Holowczyn, but more on that later.

Having started to paint the Finnish tanks for my Finnish Chain of Command project I got inspired to order some more stuff and when I came home a nice parcel was waiting with some Battlefront products including some finnish (Sissi) ski troops, a command group (to get an anti-tank rifle unit), and some Panzershreck and Panzerfaust teams (they were used by the finns but at the very end of the war). In addition some more vehicles including a BA-10 armoured car (from Zvezda), a BT-42 assault gun, a Vickers 6-ton tank and a Landsverk AA-tank.  In that nice model shop in Cherbourg I also bought a T-60 and a KV-1 again from Zvezda.  Yes the purist will say that the one T-60 known to have been captured by the Finns never was used in action – but I could not resist!

/ All the best

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Reflections – Lesnaya Part 2

I always use the Summer to take some reflective thoughts on what to do next and as discussed in the last post I did have a fair go at some GNW (Great Northern War) miniatures for yet another legendary battle – although it seems more like a prologue to that devastating battle in Ukraine a year later.  So far I, Nick Dorrell and his chums from the Wyre Forest Wargames club, have put on the following Great Northern War Battles at the Joy of Six (from 2012 to 2015):

  • Fraustadt 1706 (2012)
  • Klissow 1702 (2013)
  • Kalisz 1706 (2014)
  • Gadebusch 1712 (2015)

Following this years sabbatical I have decided on doing the “Towards Moscow Trilogy” and do the three key battles for future Joy of Six shows, namely:

  • Lesnaya 1708 (2017)
  • Holowczyn 1708 (2018)
  • Poltava 1709 (2019)

Perfectly doable projects and some reusability of miniatures from battle to battle with a natural build-up (..to disaster, at least if you are Swedish).  Apart from the finale it should be possible to fit these on 4 by 8 tables.  They are all very different types of battles so this offers some variety.  Now I just have to convince Nick Dorrell et al that this is a jolly good idea.  If I still have the will to live after this I think Narva 1700 and the two key battles of the Finnish Campaign 1713-14 would be fun to do too. But that is rushing ahead a little bit too much.

Overall I am working on a few different strands at the moment:

  • Towards Moscow Trilogy (TMT) (as discussed above) with the next target being Lesnaya 1708 for the Joy of Six (2017)
  • Halo Ground Battles – I and the little one are waiting for the box to arrive. We pre-ordered at Salute in April earlier this year and the little one took part of the first demo game of the day. He really enjoyed it. This is my dad and lad project. We are painting some Halo fleet battles in the interim.
  • French Indian War Skirmish in 6mm – I have some fond memories from this period and my dad read me the Last of the Mohicans about 3 times when I was little and when I was older we watched the movie with Daniel Day-Lewis together on more than one occasion.  Dad left us far too early – this project is for him.  I have ordered a fair few SYW/AWI from Baccus, including the new Compagnies France de la Marine and Canadian Militia.  I also ordered highlanders, Indians, jaegers, continental light infantry, queens ranges and british line. This should be plenty to build a decent French and British force. I intend to use these with the Musket and Tomahawk, Sharp Practice and Songs of Drums and Tomahawk rules sets.
  • Finnish Winter, Continuation and Lapland Wars 1939 to 1945 – I have started a project doing the Winter War in 15mm using the Chain of Command rules.  I am using miniatures from Battlefront, Resistant Rooster and Peter Pig with the idea of being able to field, for both sides, a platoon for the Winter War (1939-40) as well as the later stage of the continuation war (1941-44) that allows (with limitation) an interesting range of supports to the finns including the Landsverk L-62, F-42, Vickers 6 tonne, SU-152, T-26, T-28, BT-5 & 7, KV-1, Panzer IV Ausf J and Stug III. Some more likely than others to appear on the Battlefield. Later in the war they also get Panzerfaust and Panzerschrecks too.  This again is a historical period that is personal to myself as my mother was born in Finland.  Finland basically fought for its existence during the those cold Winter months of the Winter War against the Russians and the sacrifices on both sides deserves our respect and remembrance.
  • Other Stuff – I will do some more Saga factions as some point and also do something with the 1/3600 galleys I bought for Poseidon’s Warriors (however it currently feels like they will take a back-seat for a while). I also have 1940s Germans, French and British Chain of Command Forces I am slowly working on.  I also have some kickstarters that are screaming for some paint including Zombiecide:Black Plauge, Bloodrage and soon, I hope, the stuff from the Conan Boardgame. There are probably more things on the (slow) go.

I will try to provide some variety in updates based on these projects but as they move in very different speeds it would be pointless to do have a rolling schedule.  Things will be updated as and when they are done.

Nevermind, some further Lesnaya progress. Three dragoon regiments. / Take care.

Tverski Dragoon regiment
Smolenski Dragoon regiment
Troitski Dragoon regiment

Saga in 6mm – Part 12 – Faction Ideas

I wanted to do a short note on some of the additional Saga factions I intend to do next. I have been diverted doing some other stuff and the good weather has been non-inspiring with regards to painting.

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Senator shuttle, debris fields, satellites for X-wing from Combatzone Scenery and some laser turrets I bought off ebay ages ago.  Immersion and diversion level increasing.

The following are my notes on the three factions in the SAGA supplement called Varjazi & Basileus (all reference are to Baccus figure codes):

Pagan Rus

Starting army: Warlord (EMV01 -Armoured Spearmen), 2 No. Hearthguard (EMV01 -Armoured Spearmen), Warrior (EMV01 – Armoured Spearmen) and Levy with Javelins (ALR04 – Lanciarii)

For these I would just use the Baccus Viking codes (Spearmen) for hearthguard and some later roman lanciarii for Levy Javelins (although by now I have painted more of the buggers than I would have liked to).

Byzantium

Starting Army: Mounted Warlord (CIS01 – Seljuq Turk Heavy Cavalry), Mounted Hearthguard (CIS01 – Seljuq Turk Heavy Cavalry), Mounted Hearthguard with Bow (ASS02- Armoured Horse Archers), Warriors (EMV01 – Armoured Spearmen), Warriors with Bow (ALR05 – Archer).

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Seljuq Turk Cavalry from Baccus Crusade Range

 

This gets slightly more interesting and I thing the codes above gives a nice mixture of different troop types.

Princes Era Rus

Starting Army: Mounted Warlord (CFR04 – Turcopoles), 2 No. Mounted Hearthguard (CFR04 – Turcopoles), Warrior (EMV02 – Unarmoured Spearmen) and Warrior with Bow (ALR05 – Archer).

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Turcopoles from Baccus Crusader Range

/ All the best

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saga in 6mm – Part 11 – The Joy of 6 2016

I have had a few busy days since returning from the Joy of 6 show and I suppose I need to write a summary of what happened on the day. In short it was an excellent day.  We actually arrived the evening before and had the pleasure of doing the traditional stop in Broom Hill for an ale at the York and then a Curry at the Balti King with Peter Berry et al. It is a nice little preamble to the show and this year the discussions ranged from milk protein paint (looks interesting indeed) to kickstarters we had backed (seems like I am not the only one who has some big boxes of stuff at home).

The Sunday weather on offer was magnificent and I do not miss the old venue as it tended to get very hot inside. The new venue is superb and it is nice to see how the show grows every year and the selection of periods, game systems and style of presentation is very varied and makes the event well worth going to.  It is also nice to meet up with some old friends, although the time for a chat is limited when you are running a participation game.  Here are a few links showing off some of the stuff presented on the day (one, two, three, four).

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Our two tables on the day.  Note the Lewis chess set Queen overseeing the proceedings on the table. According to the British museum they are from the period 1150-1200 which is a little bit later than the 10th to 11th century of the Saga game – no one seemed to mind though.

 

I and Neil Shuck arrived at about 9am with the doors opening at 10am. Usually I have hundreds of Great Northern War units to put up which invariably I mess up giving me an headache in setting up – does the Kalmar regiment stand on the left or right flank?, is the Dorrellian Dragoons dismounted or on their horses? Instead I just rolled out the mats and placed the terrain and we were good to go.  Neil umpired the Kings table where we had Normans vs. Strathclyde Welsh and I umpired the Queens table where we had Vikings vs. Anglo-Danes. You can read about Neil’s day on his blog here.

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One of the first battles involved a lot of maneuvering in the forest areas.  Note the canopies having been taken off leaving the darker tiles to represent the forest area. In later games I took away some of the forest areas to allow a more full on clash.

 

Neil, not just a smooth voice on the radio but a pro umpire, just got straight into it and had a father and son playing within minutes so I just had to get going. We ran 7 or 8 games over the day and we did not dramatically change (at least knowingly) any of the original rules – they (the rules) works very well as a 6mm game. And it gives a different feel to the warband than in 28mm of being bigger – but not big enough to be an army.  The Saga rule set allow the person with the most impressive facial hair to go first in case of a tie in rolling for initiative – and on more than one occasion it was hard to tell the best beard of the day!  What is great with Saga is that it takes a while to master each faction and I learn something new every time I play (or in this case watch others playing it).

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Less forest and a more straightforward battle!

 

I think everyone who tried out the game enjoyed it and although I do hope it promoted the Saga rulesets per se I am more keen that it provoked some thought about using alternative scales for other games.  This is not universal but applies to a lot of games –  Mike Whittaker has posted some interesting things about ground scale and other considerations you may need to take (see his blog.). I have seen Flames of war in 6mm and it looks beautiful especially when there are many tanks on the table compared to 15mm, Chain of Command is based on a 15mm ground scale but perfectly playable in 6mm using centimeters instead of inches (but some consideration should be given to the basing of team instead of individuals).

Thanks to everyone who came by and asked about the terrain and how I had done this and that – it really makes my day! In addition a very big thank you to my daughter who helped out on the day and of course to Peter Berry and Wargames Emporium for putting on another fantastic show.  I am also more than grateful for the support I have had from the Meeples and Miniatures crew in getting this done (Dave I hope your foot gets better soon and Mike we need to have a beer at some point) – so thank you Neil.

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Neil’s first skirmish of the day

 

I am not 100% sure what to do for next year but I have some thoughts….

Battle_of_Lesnaya_1708_by_Larmessin
Maybe a proper GNW action like the Battle of Lesnaya 1708?

 

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…or a Pegasus Bridge Chain of Command Scenario in 6mm?

 

I will discuss a few more Saga issues in the next posts, including some thoughts on other factions and what Baccus models to use.  Then we may move on to something completely different – but more about that later.

All the very best