The Random Ramblings Of A Wargamer And Painter Of Associated Miniatures

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Objectives Etc.

Whilst trying to find something last week I came across a crashed German plane I had started, when I cannot remember, long enough ago to mislay the decals for it anyway. I think it was for a display game that did not materialise at some point, though I could be wrong, I thought that it would be ideal for an objective marker in our Battlegroup games. Without further ado I set to and painted it, the decals I stole off another kit I have yet to make, as it will be for the Nationalists in the Spanish Civil War I do not need the Luftwaffe ones.

  I am also getting towards the end of re-basing my 20mm WWII collection, sprucing them up a tad along the way, on the list was a command base, on it was a Kubelwagen, I don't know the manufacturer as I got it way back in the late 1990's. It as always bugged me because I was never able to fit it together with any degree of squareness, it always looked like an insurance write off, ideal I thought for a crashed one as another objective marker.

We made the trip over to Nottingham the weekend to attend the new show Red On Blue In Nottingham AKA ROBIN, my sole purchase was this livestock pen from Warbases, I could not leave with nothing now could I? If Shell Hole Scenics had not been a no show I had planned to invest in some WWII Hungarians if I liked them, I could not really tell from the web site pics, coupled with the fact that there are no photos for most of the range (who says shows are no longer necessary), oh well it may have saved me a bob or two as the urge as gone now.

I think this will be ideal as a cow shed in 20mm games and a pig pen in 28mm games, could be an objective marker too of course.

Check out Tales From Rhanzlistan for details of Monday's game over at GHQ, and also True To The East to see the victorious Comrade Robinski.

Next game is here at OHQ on Monday when we will start our Battlegroup  Fall Of The Reich campaign proper.


Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Rawnstadt, A Fictional Town In.................

With the Russian steamroller seemingly unstoppable I thought that I really ought to get the second part of Rawnstadt ready to defend, should the Russians forces breakthrough.
The buildings are a mix of Hovels 15mm and 20mm with the exception of the building with the old paint showing through, this was made by Matt Bickley for our games when we were on the show circuit, the cobbles are Wills, the shell craters are from Ironclad and the monument is from Sgts. Mess who also provided various bits of debris.
  Below is a picture of it with the recently Christened Rawnstadt metal factory piece I made a while ago, the road pieces are from Ironclad Miniatures.
  Although it has appeared in game shots before, here are some close ups with the added name board.

And finally the town piece with a base coat of doggy doo brown ready for painting................

Off to the new show ROBIN in Nottingham with Dave on Sunday, delivering some painting and having a mooch round, I have no list at the moment though ;~)


Monday, 6 February 2017

Hybrid Espana

For today's Spanish Civil War affray I used a Bolt Action/Battlegroup/Chain of Command rules mash up. The main working bits are Battlegroup, the game used Bolt Action order dice and I worked out a Force Morale from Chain of Command and used a modified bad things happen morale reduction chart. I decided not to add any SCW peculiarities for this game, with the exception that if the anarchists were given a "snap to it" order dice and wanted to move they would have to take an experience test, should we decide to give the creation another go I will start to add things then.
The scenario is a slightly modified one from the Battlegroup rule book.
Dave elected to bring units on from the bottom right hand corner in the photo, we diced to see how units could be deployed on the table for turn one, the Republicans, Dave, got 2, whilst the Nationalists, me, got three. These could be deployed ten inches from the diagonal centre line, running from the top left to the bottom right in the photo. One objective was placed in the road, in the board centre and a further one each could be placed by each player.
Turn one saw both sides moving their on table units into firing positions and in the Republican case one on ambush fire, duly shooting up one of the Carlist militia squads on their way to man the wall opposite the olive press, this resulted in pinning them, so they would have to rally next turn.
Turn two, both sides diced for their reserves, Republication four and, wait for it Nationalists, one! I bought on the other Carlist  squad who rushed to support their comrades who were now coming under intense fire from the Republican forces, if they could just hold on until La Legion arrived. Alas things were looking grim, the other squad was pinned and another destroyed.
Turn three, maybe things would improve for the Nationalists, dicing for reserves, yes you guessed, another roll of one, while the Republic rolled a six enabling them to bring on their remaining men. Not to worry I bought on the Legion Panzer I and put it in position to stop the Republican forces gaining the central objective, the Republications bought up their 45mm anti-tank gun to counter the Panzer I threat, whose order dice would come out first in turn four? In the meantime another Carlist squad was destroyed, further reducing the Nationalist force morale.The remaining Carlist squad moved to fill the void but failed to spot the approaching Republicans, who in their turn were able to fire on them, they not being so myopic fired causing casualties, incensed by the demise of their comrades the Carlist squad held firm, the platoon commander not been made of such stern stuff took refuge in the building.
Turn four at last the Nationalists got three units on, but it was a case of too little too late, the first order dice belonged to the Republicans who duly took out the Panzer I, on the other side with no support the other Carlist squad was lost to a man. the platoon commander with two Republican units close enough to fire pin and close assault him took to his heels hoping the cover of the walls and building would be enough to obscure him from Republican fire.
Turn five, all was up for the Nationalist cause, the Republic took the central objective, with no hope of getting it back this turn another roll on the chart reduced their force morale to one. The Carlist platoon leader did not quite have enough movement to get out of line of sight and was spotted and took down, another throw for the Nationalist force morale took them down to zero, addios Pedro.
Emboldened Republican Troops Advance

The 45mm A/T Gun  Is Brought Up

Look Out! To Late, KABOOM!

The Recklessly Brave Carlists Advance Into A Hail Of Fire

With The Threat From The Panzer I Gone The Republicans Seize The Central Objective

Their Comrades On The Left Surge Forward
La Legion, Too Little Too La Late 
All in all the various bits of the rules meshed well, I cannot see that they added much to the game either way though, I think it could have been played equally as well with Bolt Action as is, in fact with the small squad modifications we use the small Carlist squads would not have been so brittle. Something to mull over for next time anyway.


Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Flying Solo

Real life reared its ugly head on Monday and curtailed the planned Great War game, however as I had already set up the table it seemed rude not to play a game. We had already decided to use Bolt Action rules, we had both had long weekends so wanted something we were quite familiar with, not having played Through The Mud And The Blood for a while. Either rules would work solo, but I decided to stick with Bolt Action, although I enjoy games with them I still feel they lack something, not being constrained by time I could sit back and digest the game more playing solo .
I randomised where along the base line the German units would enter, the stormtroop sections and teams would enter first with the follow up troops entering on turn two, again their entry points being randomised. In hindsight I should also have, for the storm units anyway, randomised how far the units would start in from the baseline rather than the edge, starting at the edge gave the German forces a lot to do.
The Germans had a preliminary bombardment. this put pins on all the British units, however these effects were partly negated by the the first four order dice out being British, rallying is so much easier in second edition, to easy I think, this enabled them to rally all the pins on four units before the Germans moved on from the base line. There was no firing in the first turn, in turn two the British came out with the first two dice, firing on the approaching Germans but not doing to much damage at the range fired at, in turn three the Germans only managed one hit, but it did knock out one of the Lewis guns. Elation was short lived the British SOS bombardment arrived, smack bang in the middle of the advancing German units, this really stooped the German attack in its tracks causing maximum pins on all the units in the blast radius.
In turn four the German flamethrower team managed to avoid the carnage and make it to the British wire, only to find the wire uncut, so had to seek refuge in the nearby building. Here they were subsequently close assaulted by the British bombing team, the British had seven dice causing no hits, it was looking good, but no the Germans caused none either, next round was two - one to the British, goodbye flammenwerfer.
Due to the pins inflicted by the SOS stonk there was little German advance in turn five, by turn six they had only made it half way to the British line, there was a turn seven, which I played out although after turn five it was obvious the attack had stalled, so a win for the British and Dave in absentia.
I have been on and off tinkering with a Bolt Action, Battlegroup, CoC up for our Spanish Civil War games, I hope to try these out next Monday if Dave is willing. Based on my observations of the solo game I may well try them out for the Great War too.
More pics of the action below.............................................
The German Advance

About To Be Halted By The British Barrage

The British Bombers Give The Flammenwerfer Team Short Shrift

The Extent Of The German Advance

The Confident  British Advance To The Wire To Give Fire

The Whippet Out Of Fuel Provides Covering Fire

The British Relatively Safe In The Ruins Pour It In

Monday, 30 January 2017

Beaten But Not Disheartened

I had a most splendid weekend at Battlefield Hobbies Daventry, taking part in the Battlegroup Campaign Weekend.
Although doing my best to prevent the Germans from holding the town of Mundenburg by losing all of my four games, the Germans held the town by one victory point. This was in no small part to the efforts of our visitors from Finland, Mikael , Juuso and ? (Sorry can't remember the name) earning almost half the campaign points.
Organiser and Battlegroup author Warwick will be posting a report on his blog Move To Contact in due course.
I would like to thank Warwick,  my opposing Generals, all the other fine chaps and Battlefield Hobbies for making it such a fabulous weekend. I hope circumstances will allow me to attend another in the future.
Here  are a few pics of the various games, you can see a few of my burning vehicles in the bottom left of the first, although you can see from the other vehicle aflame I went down fighting.

Monday, 23 January 2017

Gas! Gas! Gas!

This is one of those pieces you don't need for a game, but which adds to the look of thing on the table. However I will use him as a sentry in our games as well.
The figure is from the Great War Miniatures, Leach Catapult set, I got this in a trade with Colonel Bill's, Dave was after the catapult for his VBCW collection but did not need the crew. The bell and post were from my bits box, Dave gave me these a while ago so I do not know the origin of them, he may of course remember and reply accordingly. 
I had a splendid Indian Mutiny game over at Dave's today, despite coming second, well I an used to this position now. This is ahead of a WI photo shoot later in the week, for Dave's article in a forthcoming issue, be sure to check out Tales From GHQ in due course for some shots of the debacle.

Next weeks game, Counter Attack At Chateau Pleque. The Germans will endeavour to re-take the hamlet, this time we will be using Through The Blood And The Mud rule set.


Monday, 16 January 2017

The Assault On The Hamlet Of Chataeu Pleque, 1918

Game Balance, now there is a thing, I don't mean that both sides should have an equal chance to win no, but on the other hand no one wants a game where your opponent or yourself have no chance of winning at all. Tricky, more so in the Great War where at some point you will be up against an enemy in trenches with probably well placed fire power and you have to attack with most likely than not, little cover and barbed wire obstacles to boot.
In this scenario I attempted to "even" things by giving the British attackers more points and included a tank to aid the infantry attack, I also included plenty of shell holes in no-man's land to give some available cover, the attack would also be a dawn attack making them less visible early on. To temper this advantage in the first turn the British units had to pass an order test to move on table, this was to reflect units going astray in the gloom, in Bolt Action after turn two you dice to see if the light is up this can also help the defender, an early result of it doing so could mean that the British were a bit tardy in the advance. The Germans although having some trenches and buildings have to defend across the front initially at least and are unable to bring all their fire power to bear from the buildings. Despite coming second I think it worked anyway.
Of course nothing can cover occasions like below, an example of German fire dice!
Enough food for thought on with the pretty pics and narrative......
Aerial Recon Photo
Turn One. Dave got all but the Whippet and a Lewis Gun section to move on table, the Germans could see nothing at this distance.
Turn Two.  The Germans managed to spot and get a shot in while the British advance continued, not a lot happening this turn.
Turn Three. The sun was up all was clear, the attack began in earnest, at this stage Dave was having to move and fire so the Germans got off lightly, as you can see by my firing dice result above so did the British :~)
Turn Four.  The Germans began to take a beating, especially the MG and field gun, the sections in the buildings having no real targets of opportunity, having seen that the British attack was concentrating on the right I should really have moved the section in the far building earlier, something I would regret later.
Turn Five. Things were looking grim for the Germans, the only real success was eliminating the mortar spotters so at least the off mortar could not change targets. Although by then the damage was done, combined with concentrated rifle grenade and lewis gun fire both the field gun and the MG08 were eliminated and the section in the trench was taking pins, making them virtually ineffective.
Turn Six.  The section from the far building was stuck in the road, it could run and gain the trench or advance and fire, either way the amount of British fire against it meant it was doomed really. They opted to fire hoping to inflict some casualties to lessen the opposition for the counter attack by its comrades. We threw for an extra turn and got one, so I had another chance to inflict more casualties but so did the British and with more fire power to do it. The game was lost though, the German CO bugged out and the section in the other building surrendered. The scene is set for the German counter attack.
An enjoyable game, Dave played the British well, although the dice were unkind I should have played a lot better than I did. Balanced? I would like to think so, as much as one can anyway.
The German Trenches

Ajax Lends Support

Ajax Leads The Attack

The Germans Seem Happy To Stay In The Buildings

The Brits Enter The German Trenches
The Sepia Shots

Off to GHQ next week for a foray in the Indian Mutiny, Gad Sir the heat!