Saturday, March 29, 2014

Off to Maryland!

         The wife and I are preparing to head off to Maryland this morning. Molly the dog is getting ready to go to her "camp" where she can bark all day and drive someone else crazy for a change.

      I hate to say it but the high point of this trip is the fact that I told my wife I was taking off by myself for a few hours so I can go to the bookstore I visited last time. This bookstore has a very large history section, much of it is military history. I would say just a 10' bookcase is filled with Civil War books and another bookcase is on British history. I didn't even get to check out the rest of the shelves last time.  I saved some extra money for this trip........

     The week will also be used to try to iron out ideas for my ancients wargame.  I might also put some time in to my Shiak-Brookshire Imagination campaign.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Weak Ankled Peasants and Other Odds & Ends

      My wife and I are planning for a weeks vacation, which will bring to a halt to my wargaming activities. However, this will also give me time to made some ideas of future wargame plans.

      My last posting was another war-game using ancients to fight the battle. While an enjoyable game, the background of it (a cross border raid) is becoming old.  I needed new ideas. While sitting outside giving my dog some outside time on an unseasonably warm day,  I reread Tony Baths first article on his Hyborian campaign in an old Battle magazine. It got me thinking of reading some of the  Conan stories by Robert Howard.  On Kindle I found some free samples of the stories. While reading these it made me think of trying to start a basic campaign game using my Peter Laing armies.  I have a map from a back issue of Lone Warrior magazine which will form the basis of this campaign. I see several city-states starting a period of expansion and exploration where they will run into other tribes.

      The ECW peasant figures posted earlier were just crying to be cast. The mold had issues. The peasant with the cudgel was weak ankled and the figures kept breaking at the ankles. A little cutting seemed to take care of the problem.

   Talking of Peter Laing peasants, Ross Macfarland of Battle Game of the Month blog sent me a collection of ECW, Renaissance, and several odds and ends Peter Laings. It had many figures I don't have, which shall be put aside for masters, including 2 Medieval peasant figures. Somehow I just think most people ignore the lowly peasants of the period who made up a large part of medieval armies.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Hyborian Border Raid

   Erilred  led his tribe of barbarians across the border on yet another  raid.  It took no time for the barbarians to have more than they could carry and they turned for home.  The commander of the border guard, Lord Rigal  gathered his forces to intercept the barbarians.  
The Border Guard is on the top of the page, the barbarians on the bottom.

The barbarians facing the border guard.

The barbarian cavalry on their right hits the guards causing 50% casualties but the unit holds fast.

The border guards inflect heavy losses on the barbarians. Lord Rigal tries to maneuver to hold the barbarian cavalry in check.  This turns out to be a disastrous mistake.

The border guards counterattack against the barbarian cavalry and causes 2/3 losses to them and forces them back.

Meanwhile on the barbarian left they attack Lord Rigal's cavalry and breaks them.

The barbarians continue their attack and eliminates the cavalry and kills Lord Rigal. The  guards have just lost their most powerful unit.

The barbarians are now slowly pushing the guards back. On the upper right of the picture can be seen the barbarian cavalry  attack. They have just caused heavy losses and pushed back one unit of guards.

The cavalry's followup attack they push back another unit.Meanwhile the barbarian infantry start turning the guards left flank.

The barbarian cavalry keeps up the pressure.

The regular guards try to keep the barbarian cavalry from turning their right.

The guards turn on their pursuers and eliminates them.

The guards archers manage to take the woods....

.....and  causes heavy losses to another barbarian unit.

The barbarian cavalry eliminates the regular guards and threatens to cut off the retreat  of the border guards.

Meanwhile the barbarian spearmen defeat a unit of guards archers.

The guards rally and try to push back the barbarian cavalry.

The barbarians massacres the guards left flank and the cavalry turns to cut off the retreating archers.

The barbarians finishing off the guards.

The archers, surrounded, surrenders.

In this game both sides had 9 units; first side to lose 5 units is defeated.  Even when one side loses  5 units, I continue to play until  the end of the turn.  For the guards it was a disastrous turn.  They lost 4 units in this one turn.

I had originally planned to use some Peter Laing Picts that Ian Dury had sent me. However, they were so well glued to their bases that I wasn't able to have them rebased in time for this game.

The rules used were modified Battlelore.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

A Couple of "New" Peter Laings

I recently won two lots of Peter Laing English Civil War figures. For me the best figures are two different "peasant" figures. 

On left: F514 Peasant with billhook. Figure on right: F513 Peasant with cudgel.

For me these figures have great potential. Besides ECW peasants, I could see them as Irish rebels from the 1798 rebellion. On the bizarre side,  maybe leprechauns guarding their gold.  That idea is from a campaign I've been thinking of for a while.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Toy Soldier Battle of Wormy Ridge

      After the battle of Nords Crossing, the remains of the Brookshire Army marched away to lick it's wounds, leaving the frontier to fend for itself. It was supposed that the Shiak Army would loot Nords Crossing and the immediate area, then march home again. However, after resting (and looting) for several days, the Shiak Army received reinforcements and sent their militia home. General Von Piffle then led his army farther into Brookshire.

  Panic spread throughout the frontier as Von Piffles Army advanced, looting as it went. With General Humphreys dead and the Army gone, who could stop the invasion?

    In one of the local farms near Nords Crossing was a young officer, Major Barnaby of the Rifles.  He had fallen, wounded by canister that broke the Rifles right at their moment of glory an was now being nursed back to health.  When he heard of the Shiak advance, he slipped out of the farm and on a plow horse, went from village to village mustering the local militia.  He soon had 4 units of infantry and two of artillery. The local militia general gladly gave command of this little army to Barnaby.  Barnaby found a nice ridge line with clear farmland in front of it. The road Von Piffle was on cut through the middle of the ridge.  To advance any farther Von Piffle would have to take the ridge.
Brookshire Army on top; Shiak Army on bottom.

Brookshire Army in line. Units are easy to identify by the colors of their coats. Major Barnaby stands in  the middle of the road.

The Shiak Army from the rear. Their one battery is on the road and one cavalry unit in the center.

On the Shiak right the Guards Brigade advances; the hussars go behind the line to try to get around the Brookshires left flank.

On the Brookshires right, the White unit advances off the ridge to engage the enemy; the Blue unit  advances in support of the Whites.

The Shiak Guards close in on the Greys.  The Greys are taking lots of pressure but are holding firm.

Meanwhile the Shiak 1st Brigade is hitting the Brookshires hard.

The Greys fire on the fast closing Hussars, with no effect. The artillery, however, hits one unit  and forces it back.

Meanwhile in the Brookshire center, the Redcoats attack off the ridge and causes 50% losses  on one unit. the Whites attack the Shiak battery before they deploy, causing 50% losses.

The Bluecoats push back another Shiak unit.

The Greys fire on the Hussars again, but miss. The artillery fires on another unit, forcing another unit to retreat, giving the Greys some breathing space.

The Redcoats eliminate the infantry unit to it's front; the Whitecoats finishes off the crew to the battery. On the left center of the picture the Bluecoats have shifted to their  left, and have killed 50% of the unit to it's front and made them retreat.

The Hussars push their attack and the Greys are forced back losing 1/3 of their men.

The Hussars continue their charge and forces the Grey to break.

The Shiak Guards force back the Redcoats, who fall back onto Major Barnaby.

Meanwhile, the Shiak unit rallies and hits the Bluecoats, forcing them back.

The Greys counter attack  forces the Hussars back. The battery fires on the Guards at their front, pushing them back.

The Whitecoats then hits their flank and continues to push them back.

The Brookshire artillery finishes off another Shiak unit.

The Bluecoats hits the last unit of the 1st Shiak Brigade, taking 2/3 of the unit.

The Shiak Hussars pushes the Greys back, and then attacks the battery and overruns it.

The Shiak Guards launch a desperate attack; the Brookshire troops lose heavily  but hold fast.

The last of the Shiak 1st  continues to fight and the Bluecoats lose more men.

The Shiak Guards try but just can't break the Brookshire troops.

The Bluecoats finally finishes off the last of the 1st Brigade.  The Shiak Army has lost  50%  and has to retreat.

General Von Piffle leads the last of his army off the field.

The Brookshire final line. The cannon in the foreground was left by the Shiak Army.

A photo of Major Barnaby after the battle. For his service he has been promoted to Lt. Col. of the Rifles and on his left breast can be seen the medal awarded to him for the battle.

Another shot of Lt. Col. Barnaby.

Somehow this toy soldier deserved to be memorialized for this battle. As a kid I often awarded toy soldiers with medals for bravery.  Maybe it's time to start doing that again. Rules are Bob Condrey's Memoir of Battle.