Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Final Light Infantry

I've now finished the second batch of Fleurian Chasseurs a Pied. This gives me a further 10 men and 2 leaders (Big Men for Sharp Practice), making 3 dozen light infantry in all, when added to the earlier Voltigeurs.

They are the same Perry early ACW figures as before, including a command pack this time. When done, the flag will be a clipart printout and highlight paint job. The sergeant (who was originally another standard bearer with an empty hand) has had a plasticard and greenstuff sword added.

This batch:

Combined Fleurian light infantry (minus 1 figure which I foolishly left in the drawer). This makes 3 'groups' for Sharp Practice, or 1 battalion (on magnetic sabot bases) for the big games at Ayton when we do 19th century:

Light battalion deployed with Voltigeur flank companies skirmishing out front on open order bases (as per Tim Hall's excellent ACW rules):

On to the line infantry next.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

A Couple of Punic Battles - part 2

The first game ended in a Roman minor victory, with them scoring 15 victory points (14 being required for a win) against the Carthaginians, with the latter scoring 10 in return.

With the terrain and figures already to hand it would have been rude not to play another game so I made a few minor changes to the table (ie. clearing a bit more central space) and re-deployed. This time I upped the armies by half again for a 150 point game involving a total of just over 500 figures. The Romans had now recruited a force of Spanish and the Carthaginians had bought in more Gauls and Numidians.

On the assumption that the Carthaginians were coming back for more, and the Romans were happy to oblige (and confident from the first battle), I decided that both sides were 'up for it' and there was no defender as such. I didn't take many pictures this time, but did capture the deployment and some of the early moves.

The lines getting closer:

First clashes:

This time the Romans were faced by a first line of seething Gauls who charged in hard as they always do. The elephants were in the Carthaginian second line, as were the best of their infantry. It worked; despite the Romans using their unique 'Legion' rule which allowed them to swap tired units in combat with fresh reserves, and cutting up most of the Gauls, the attrition was too heavy and their right and right-centre crumbled. Both sides were forced to commit generals to the melee, and several were lost.

What's Latin for 'not this lot again!'?

When the dust cleared the Carthaginians had got their revenge. Both Roman flanks were crushed and although they still had a reasonably viable second line still able to fight, the enemy had achieved a decent victory: 23-15 (first to score 21 being the winner in this bigger battle). I think the Romans would have been able to fall back on their camp, and march away during the night or the following day - the enemy were too hard hit themselves to prevent it.

It was very enjoyable to return to this period, collection and rules. I hope not to leave it so long next time.

A quick note on figures;

The Romans are made up of Essex and Old Glory infantry, Essex cavalry and a right old mix for skirmishers, including some 10th Legion and (now defunct) Strategia e Tattica.

The Carthaginians are even more of a mix - most are Corvus Belli, but there are some Lancashire, Essex and Old Glory in there too.

They all go together well as far as I'm concerned, which makes picking what to buy a matter of preference rather than being restricted by size, etc.

A Couple of Punic Battles - part 1

In the end I played two solo Rome vs Carthage games on Friday evening, finishing off on Saturday morning.

The first was a 100 point game (100 points per army as per the rules I was using). I played it as a standard attack-defence game, having previously rolled to determine that the Carthaginians would be the attacker. The game set up gave the Romans a handy hill in their deploy area, and provided for a couple of woods towards the flanks. There would be plenty of open space in the middle for the infantry to come to grips, and just enough open ground to either flank for the Carthaginian cavalry advantage to be a factor.

The Roman commanders have a quick pre-battle pep rally:

The deployment and battlefield:

The Roman infantry (2 lines rather than 3, but I think most rules and wargames have some compromise here):

The Carthaginians:

The Elephant brigade:

Spanish and African infantry:


True to their mission, the Carthaginian army advanced, pushing cavalry ahead on the flanks and skirmishers into the woods to fight their Roman counterparts. The Romans used more velites in an attempt to delay the crunch of elephant on hastati, but couldn't hold them up for long and soon the battle was in full flow as the front ranks crashed into each other. Gauls and Spanish charged the Roman wall and heavy cavalry closed in on the weaker Roman left.

The fighting was tough everywhere, and the Roman cavalry in particular fought back tenaciously despite the odds.

The elephants, having swept aside the velites (who did at least cause some casualties and disruption) got stuck into a unit of principes, pushing them back in disorder.

A freak result for some of the Spanish against heavier Roman infantry!

The battle lines surged back and fore and each side had their share of triumphs and disasters. After 8 game turns though, the Romans had dealt with the nellies and held on despite their vulnerable flanks, winning a close victory (15-10) and forcing the enemy to retire from the field. There would need to be a re-match, but in the meantime it was definitely beer o'clock..

Friday, 26 September 2014

Quick pics (for Andy)

Although he's probably gone to bed now, Andy was chasing for some pictures so without any wordy bits, here are a few I thought I'd post ahead of the rest...

One good game played, another slightly bigger one underway.

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Game Decision for Friday

Although I hadn't intended to run a public referendum on what game to play on Friday evening, there's been a landslide vote in favour of the Punic Wars in 15mm. Or rather Count Belisarius said he'd like to see it, so lacking a better reason to do something else, how can I refuse?

Rome vs Carthage then, with the usual assortment of allies for the latter to keep the Romans on their toes. I'll set up a standard sized game of 100 points per side, using my house rules (By Force of Arms, written by my friend Jase, and which have seen plenty of action over the years).

I've already selected the armies, and a dice roll has determined that the Carthaginians are the 'attacker', meaning that for strategic reasons they need to get their skates on and win decisively before they run out of time. Good job they've got a cavalry advantage and, of course, some nellies to throw at the enemy!

More soon..

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Time For a Game

I have an evening to myself coming up this Friday and rather than waste it watching TV or an old film, I reckon it's too good an opportunity to miss to have a solo game. Now I just need to decide what to play..

Without giving it much thought yet, my initial ideas include:

Something in 15mm (which I've not trotted out for a while), maybe one of:

  • Caesar at the Battle of the Sambre, for which I've got a scenario written up and ready to go
  • A 2nd Punic War clash
  • Rampaging Goths and Huns against the late Roman Empire
  • Or, a fantasy game - Dwarves vs Orcs as I haven't really given the Dwarves a proper run out since painting enough for a decent game
Alternatively I could stick with 28s, and perhaps give the 18th century another go. I fancy re-fighting John Ray's scenario 'Attack on the Garrison at Tilsit' which looks like a very interesting, compact encounter.

I'll mull things over for a couple of days and probably decide on Friday. It's too easy to view getting all the terrain, scenery and figures out just for a solo game as too much bother, but if I don't make the effort from time to time, what's the point? It's always rewarding and I always feel it's time well spent - so roll on Friday!

I'll be sure to post, whatever the game ends up being.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Legion de Fleurie Grenadiers - first figures

Following on from my previous posts about my Fleurian mid-18th century Legion ( here and here ) I have now completed the first small batch of Grenadiers to go with them. These were actually painted a couple of weeks ago but I wanted to base them before posting.

These are RSM figures (Austrian Grenadiers) painted in the same colours as the light infantry. The uniform was inspired by one of John Ray's gorgeous Spanish regiments. White gaiters aren't much fun to paint, but do look the business when they're done.

I have the rest of the battalion to do of course, which will take it to a strength of 30, so lots more work ahead! This unit will be the core of the Legion, with lighter troops in support. The rest is made up of light infantry, hussars and a light gun. I aim to have it complete somewhere around the end of the year.

Now back to painting those remaining 19th century Chasseurs!