Sunday, 22 December 2013

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!*

*brought to you as The Swabian Greeting performed by the infamous Götz von Berlichingen depicted here with his personal banner, bearing his coat of arms and his famous quote as a slogan freely after W. Goehte.

Gottfried „Götz“ von Berlichingen (1480 – 23 July 1562), also known as Götz of the Iron Hand, was a German (Franconian) Imperial Knight (Reichsritter) and mercenary. He was born around 1480 into the noble family of Berlichingen in Württemberg. Götz bought Hornberg castle (Neckarzimmern) in 1517, and lived there until his death in 1562.
He was active in numerous campaigns during a period of 47 years (1498–1544), including the German Peasants‘ War, besides numerous feuds; in his autobiography he estimates that he fought 15 feuds in his own name, besides many cases where he lent assistance to friends, including feuds against the cities of Cologne, Ulm, Augsburg and the Swabian League, as well as the bishop of Bamberg.

In 1497, Berlichingen entered the service of Frederick I, Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach. In 1498, he fought in the armies of Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I, seeing action in Burgundy, Lorraine, and the Brabant, and in the Swabian War the following year. By 1500, Berlichingen had left the service of Frederick, and formed a company of mercenaries, selling his services to various Dukes, Margraves, and Barons.
In 1504, Berlichingen and his company fought for Albert IV, Duke of Bavaria. During the siege of the city of Landshut, he lost his right arm when enemy cannon fire forced his sword against him. He had a mechanical prosthetic iron replacement made, which is today on display at the Jagsthausen Castle. This prosthetic hand was ahead of its time, being capable of holding objects from a sword to a feather pen. In spite of this injury, Berlichingen continued his military activities. In the subsequent years he was involved in numerous feuds, both of his own and in support of friends and employers.
In 1512, near the town of Forchheim, due to a long running and bitter feud with Nuremberg he raided a group of Nuremberg merchants returning from the great fair at Leipzig. On hearing this, Emperor Maximilian placed Berlichingen under an Imperial ban. He was only released from this in 1514, when he paid the large sum of 14,000 gulden. In 1516, in a feud with the Principality of Mainz and its Prince-Archbishop, Berlichingen and his company mounted a raid into Hesse, capturingPhilip IV, Count of Waldeck, in the process. A ransom of 8,400 gulden was paid for the safe return of the count. For this action, he was again placed under the ban in 1518.
In 1519, he signed up in the service of Ulrich, Duke of Württemberg, who was at war with the Swabian League. He fought in the defence of Möckmühl, but eventually was forced to surrender the town, owing to a lack of food and ammunition. In violation of the terms of surrender, he was held prisoner and handed over to the citizens of Heilbronn, a town he had raided several times. His fellow knights Georg von Frundsberg and Franz von Sickingen successfully argued for his release in 1522, but only after he paid a ransom of 2,000 gulden and swore not to take vengeance on the League.
In 1525, with the outbreak of the German Peasants‘ War, Berlichingen led the rebels in the district of Odenwald against the Ecclesiastical Princes of the Holy Roman Empire. Despite this, he was (according to his own account) not a fervent supporter of their cause. He agreed to lead the rebels partly because he had no other option, and partly in an effort to curb the excesses of the rebellion. Despite his wishes to stop wanton violence, Berlichingen found himself powerless to control the rebels and after a month of nominal leadership he deserted his command and returned to the Schloss Jagsthausen to sit out the rest of the rebellion.
After the Imperial victory, he was called before the diet of Speyer to account for his actions. On 17 October 1526, he was acquitted by the Imperial chamber. Despite this, in November 1528 he was lured to Augsburg by the Swabian League, who were eager to settle old scores. After reaching Augsburg under promise of safe conduct, and while preparing to clear himself of the old charges against him made by the league, he was seized and made prisoner until 1530 when he was liberated, but only after repeating his oath of 1522 and agreeing to return to his Burg Hornberg and remain in that area.
Berlichingen agreed to this, and remained near the Hornberg until Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, released him from his oath in 1540. He served under Charles in the 1542 campaign against the Ottoman Empire of Suleyman the Magnificent in Hungary, and in 1544 in the Imperial invasion of France under Francis I of France.

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Eve of Battle goes publish! In approx 10 days!

As my proposal won‘t slip out of my hands into my keyboard so easily as I thought it would ... so:

I thought I could publish this on some game/card game producer/distributor in the meantime.

Game crafter seems to be a good choice to me. An American company who is feeding on a whole game geeks culture over there.

They are all based on the same system. You pay for the production costs, which are print-on-demand (cheaper than litho but still more expensive than your little jet p.... print desk top box), but still therefore if you purchase only one item you'll have to pay for this. And they are all overseas for a reason (minimum wage and greater distribution costs).

Secondly you'll have to pay for the price of half circumventing the globe (if you are living here in the UK) which is nearly the price of the whole product. That seems on the first sight unfair, but I just won't collect multiple requests and then do a bulk order, just as nobody would. Point is precisely to leave that with the company - distributional headaches.

Unless somebody makes a start with a similar gigantic minimum wage company here (which would, I think, affect greatly my profession here $§&%&/()=)!!) -  you‘ll have to pay a connosoir price for this item for now until I find a suitable games company who are interested in this.

Yours affectionally,


Sunday, 8 December 2013

Italian Wars - Pike & Shotte rules

All Work-in-Progress (Point values aren‘t properly checked ... etc.), but as for now, this is how I group and base my army and what kind of rules ‘adjustments‘ I will use:

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Battle at the Old Fort

"Sir, we got message from the vanguard of the Grenadiers, who should have taken the old fort at the road on their reconaissance mission. They stumbled upon a massive Rebel contingent, even some rumours that they have French allied units with them!"

"Tell them to stay put, we will come to their aid as fast as possible ..."

This battle started slowly off! With the heavy snow rule and the most of the terrain woods it was no wonder. My (very gamey!) hope was that the hill would be in middle of the field and my Grenadiers could claim it as scouts - but oh cruel dice! It would have been the shortest battle ever, now I fear it will be the longest.

My Grenadiers got mauled by the rebel guns and had to retreat behind the Line to get rallied. The Hessians didn‘t move for 3 turns! The American got into VERY strong positions behind barricades before the hill, the French at last come and join them. One American Gun and the riflemen are out of powder. Yep. thats it.

The Grenadiers taking the hits by the Rebel artillery

The Guard retreats to lick their wounds

The untested British Line out of shooting range

The static Hessian Brigade

The American taking the hill

The Battlefield once we stopped ...

Battle map so far...