Friday, 25 August 2017

Legends of the Old West

A brief report today, mainly because I forgot my camera, so had to resort to the old iPad...!

We've been playing about with scenario-based 'Legends of the Old West' games, mainly so I could make sure I was happy that the system was suitable for large multi-player games at the club, and would be easy enough for new players to pick up.

I intend to write it up as a generic skirmish system, lifting elements  from the 4 Legends of the Old West books, together with Legends of the High Seas, and also the Lord of the Rings: Strategy Battle Game set upon which LotOW was based. Once written, I will just produce army/weapons lists for whatever floats my boat (i.e. whatever I fancy painting!) - on the list at the moment will be more Darkest Africa, Border Reivers, Pirates and Indian Mutiny.

Anyhoo, to get people used to the rules, we've gone back to smaller 1-on-1 tournament style games for a few weeks. There were 4 of us (myself, Steve, Bob and Dave) - so we each played two games, the second game being the two winners and 2 losers of the first.

I was using a Lawman posse...

First game I played Bob - Bob gave himself a good defensive position, but given that most of his Cowboys had six-guns, and I had armed mine with Heavy Pistols, I out ranged just sat outside of six-gun range and picked him off until he had to come out into the open.

I took down all bar his Leader, for the loss of just 2 figures...

We did get a couple of rules wrong (relating to the use of Fame and Fortune) which may or may not have made a difference, but as it was a learning exercise, it didn't really matter.

Second game, I played Steve (he beat Dave in his first game). This was a little more cagey as we manoeuvred for position...Steve had 3 troopers (from a Texas Ranger Posse) with rifles/muskets, and up close, all his figures were using knifes - something I hadn't thought of - so had the edge in close combat.

However, as he approached and stole initiative, he rather astonishingly missed everything in front of know that scene in Pulp Fiction....well that was me, looking around as the hail of bullets whirled around...!

So pulling out our Heavy Pistols we took him down.


On My other flank, Steve was having more success as he had made it into close combat and started taking me down. A lucky shot caused a Head for the Hills test, and against all the odds, he failed victory was mine, rather luckily I think, because had he hung around I was surely toast...!

Excellent set of games, enjoyed by all!

Observations: my initial concern was that close combat is a tad too random, and though I may still look at this, Steve proved that there is an edge to be found...and it does make a difference, so I will give it some thought.

Friday, 18 August 2017

More Darkest Africa

More Darkest Africa goodness last night, using our adapted version of Legends of the Old West rules. We used a variation on the 'Avert the Massacre' scenario from 'Blood on the Plains'.

Native and Zanzibar figures are mine, British figures belong to Steve Hardy. The Native Village is an old Games Workshop piece from years Orc Village, but it looks entirely suitable for this!!!

The British Surveying Party have been repeatedly attacked by natives in the area, and are determined to end it once and for all by burning the native village to the ground. The natives, however, have anticipated this attack and have sent word (and payment) to a force of Zanzibar Mercenaries who are on their way…

As usual, it is an ImagiNation scenario, so not really rooted in reality...!!!

The British aggressors, and the African Natives deploy on table, the Zanzibar Mercenaries are diced for individually every turn, so come on in dribs and drabs.

The attacker must set fire to all the native village buildings, or force the defenders to head for the hills in order to win. The defenders must prevent this from happening by making the attackers head for the hills.
The natives deploy to repel the British invaders...

The British line up....camel corps on their left flank...

The natives manouver into position....

The British advance...

The Zanzibar mercenaries arrive....will they help, or will they just enslave the survivors...

Native casualties are heavy...

...but they manage to get close to the British positions...

The camel corps find themselves surrounded, and are almost wiped out...

The British take stock... the Mercenaries redeploy...

The British start taking casualties the natives hold their position!

Meanwhile, the native King is attacked by the last surviving member of the Camel Corps

Casualties on both sides are heavy, and they both break in the same turn....a well fought draw, but the Natives survive to fight another day....if they are not enslaved first......!
Another excellent game - the rules proving they are highly suitable to this sort of small to medium scale skirmish game. We had 1000 points per side, and the game was very well balanced.
Next week, back to the Old West........

Friday, 11 August 2017

Darkest Africa - First Game

Well, I've been painting up Darkest Africa figures as you know - I haven't got round to photographing each unit as yet, but will get to it soon. Tonight, we put on our first game at the club - I provided the Zanzibar Slavers, and my good friend Steve provided the British regulars.

For rules, we decided to use a variation of Legends of the Old West - now sadly out of print, though still the best game Warhammer Historical every is easy to play and suited to multi-player games.

I've been working on adapting it (using elements of  the 4 LotOW books, Legends of the High Seas & the Lord of the Rings set which the system is based on).

We used the Dawn Attack scenario, from the Blood on the Plains book, and set the terrain up as can be seen below.

British set up is shown below, everyone was sleeping on the roofs, except for two sentries and the camels as the forces of Zanzibar approached to steal supplies.....!

Disaster strikes for the Zanzibar force as they were spotted in the very first turn, and the alarm raised.

The Zanzibar men suffered heavy casualties from the British repeating rifles...all high skilled troops, hitting on a 4+....!

The camel riders got to their mounts to try to protect the entrance to the town and ride down iscolated enemy troops...

The natives finally started to cause some damage, killing a number of British and reaching the walls...

The camel riders sped quickly towards where the breach was happening to support their foot troops, but were driven off by heavy bow and musket fire... the fanatics finally breached the walls...!

But it was all too late, as the Emir of Zanzibar watched on, more of his troops died, and the remainder slunk back into the undergrowth...

An excellent game over all, very encouraging rules wise - everyone playing picked it up very quickly, and fun was had by all.

I will certainly be pressing on with my rules adaption, writing "proper" army lists up for the Dark Continent, and painting more figures...!!!

A brief report, but I'm off to Britcon in an hour or so......

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Guilford Courthouse Project - Part 1

I've been working on forces for Guilford Courthouse in 6mm (Baccus Miniatures) for a few years now on and off - it kept stumbling because I have been unable to find a set of rules I was happy with that suited my basing. Black Powder just doesn't do it for me, and I've also tried Patriots and Loyalists, Volley and Bayonet, Principles of War and many others! I had pretty much settled on Principles of War until I picked up the new Polemos: RDG which I like very much.

Now cards on the table here, we played the Franco Prussian version when it first came out and I really didn't like felt, to me at least, as though there were some great mechanisms (I like tempo in particular) but it felt very clunky, and too much like hard work....however, I always felt there was a decent game waiting to get step up RDG!

Anyhow, I have worked out my army lists at 1 Infantry Stand = 100 Men; 1 Cavalry Stand = 50 Men & 1 Artillery Stand = 2 Guns.

So here goes:

British Army

Lt. Gen. Charles, 2nd Earl Cornwallis

Webster’s Brigade (Lt. Col. James Webster):
23rd Foot (3 Bases)
33rd Foot (3 Bases)

Leslie’s Brigade (Major General Alexander Leslie):
2nd Battalion, 71st Foot (3 Bases)
Von Bose Regiment (4 Bases)

The Brigade of Guards (Brigadier General Charles O’Hara):
1st Battalion (2 Bases)
2nd Battalion (2 Bases)
Guard Grendier Company (1 Base)
Guards Light Infantry Company (1 Base)

Auxiliary Troops
British Legion: Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton (5 x Legion Cavalry; 1 x 17th Light Dragoons)
Jaeger Company: Cpt. Wilhelm von Roeder (1 Base)

Royal Artillery:
1st section – 2 6lb field guns (1 Base)
2nd Section – 2 6lb field guns (1 Base)
3rd section – 2 3lb field guns (1 Base)

Now for the Pictures:


23rd Foot:

33rd Foot:


2nd Battalion, 71st Foot:

Technically these should be wearing trousers, rather than kilts!
Von Bose Regiment:

The Hessians tended to have a standard per company, hence the way I've done it...I need to replace the flags, as these are not correct....just filler until i found an accurate flag!


Guards Battalion:

The Guards did not carry standards in the colonies, so neither do mine!

Grenadiers and Light Foot:


Hessian Jagaers:

Tarleton's Legion:

I chose 6 figures per base rather than 9, as I think of them as Light Cavalry, so prefer a bit more "space" on the bases.

That's it - I still need to paint up figures for the 17th Light Dragoons (only 1 Stand) and a Command figure for Tarleton himself...

The Continentals need about 8 stands doing and I am finished, so I will post pictures for these later...