Saturday, January 18, 2014

Peter Laing Minitrain Ambush

      I haven't done much wargaming recently and wanted to squeeze a game in. I also wanted a break from ancients and wanted to use my Minitrains western train.
      As I wanted to use my Peter Laing home cast Victorian Parade figures, the scenario is a train  bringing reinforcements to an outpost dealing with a local rebellion (I was thinking along the lines of one of the Canadian rebellions or Fenian raids).
      The rebels know the train is on it's way. What's more, it had a battery of artillery on board which would boost the rebels firepower. In the game, the artillery plays no part, I just wanted to use the flatcar.
The rebels have dropped a tree across the track to stop the train. They wait in the woods at the top of the photo.

The train screeches to a stop.  

The rebels emerge from the woods as the Brookshire Fusiliers disembark from the train.

Rebel fire kills one soldier and forces some other to seek shelter behind the train (retreat roll).

The gunners push forward to protect their guns. They kill one rebel and with support from the infantry push back two units of rebels. In the background, another infantry unit has advanced and killed one rebel.

Another view of the above encounter.

The rebels rally and manager to bring all their guns to bear, inflecting heavy losses to the troops, including 3/4 of the gunners.

The rebels close in on the last gunner, who goes down protecting the guns.

The infantry manage to kill two more rebels and force one rebel unit to retreat.

At the extreme right a rebel unit closes in on the righthand infantry unit. Another rebel unit has lost another man and was forced back.

The rebels attacking the front of the train now starts rolling up the infantry's right flank, killing 5 infantrymen in the process.

Another view of the above move, at the end of the rebels move. One rebel unit is trying to cut the infantry line in half.

The captain in charge of the Brookshire Fusiliers, who is with the rightmost unit, now tries to link up with the rearmost units.

The rebels pour fire on this unit killing three. Only the captain remains standing.

A rebel sniper manages to pick off the captain.

Rebel fire at the back of the train kills another man and the last man in that unit panics and retreats. The other unit suffers no loss, but realizes all is lost and uses it's move to retreat.

The rebels swarms over their trophies; a great addition to their firepower.

I used Bob Cordery's "Memoir of Battle" rules to fight this battle. The rules make for a quick, exciting game.


  1. I have been looking at some of Bob Condrey's battles and seen the limited number of units fighting. This fight the rebels had 8 units, the government 6. It was indeed a fun game. My ancient games had upwards to 12 units per side, which made for longer games. I have been looking for more of the trains, but the prices are so high. The train has a "Little Wars" look to it that just seems right to use with Peter Laing figures.

  2. John, where did you get the trains? I have never seen anything like these over here!

  3. I buy them on Ebay. If you search Minitrains (one word) or Egger Bahn they will pop up. I also found out that a company are making Minitrains again. If you go to: you can buy new trains. I have bought 4 used sets in the last couple of weeks at fairly good prices. 3 out of 4 engines are in working order. I plan to do a posting showing the engines soon. they are Narrow gauge HO e/009. There have been some good sets in England the last couple of weeks.

  4. Thanks, I have been looking for suitable trains for 1870s Prussians and French for a long time!

  5. When planning this game, it was either using the above scenario or one based on the Franco Prussian War that's in a solo wargaming book I have. If I had used the FPW game, I was going to use a Liliput narrow gauge train just purchased. I'm planning to post some photos of the locomotives I've got.

  6. I'd love to see the pictures of that. Which solo wargaming book does the scenario come from?

  7. Before reading the text I looked at the pictures and thought (give or take the red coats0 I might have been looking the the Boer War. Which goes to show just how versatile that wee train is (that locomotive: so cute!) .

  8. One reason I'm hooked on the Minitrains is the look of them. I actually have got another Minitrains engine that would look good for the Boer War. Thanks for the idea; I might just have to bring out my Peter Laing Boer War Brits!