Saturday, 31 January 2015

La Petite Guerre and campaign rules (1776 to 1777)

"La Petite Guerre" prototype has arrived - albeit without acceptable counters, so it will take some more time ...
... then we need some testing of "La Petite Guerre" (and I also need some Hessians to paint and finish!!!) below how the LPG would fit into an Black Powder Campaign with my personal "Mouse" rules adaptions.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Germanwine but more like Hessian soda!

Announced as a mix between Germantown and Branywine it turned soon out to be more an Arnheim-Hill or Rourke's Sh..(movement).

Angus, Dave and Donald and me were in for the Crown and Chris, Ian and Jack were fighting for more representation in a less taxing way, or so...

The British plan was to outflank the Rebels on two sides in an visionary attack just like "two Buffalo horns"(The author can confirm, it was still going to be an AWI game, Black powder rules, tuned version), with a strong centre and a fast encircling pincer movement with British Brigades at the left and Hessian at the right, right?

Yes, errrm, but the Hessian weren't that tough or fast, more stereotypical like Cornwallis and Burgoyne would like to have them, and gout-ridden slow, with the maximum movement allowed was 2. A tough choice, if you have to cross a river that cost you 2 moves to cross. As I remembered and had to re-experience a river crossing on its own under enemy fire can be quite a dramatic event (see

Additional the deployment zone was some sort of a bottleneck with a tiny patch of forrest which would force the Germans to cross the river in column (Auch!) presenting my flank to the Continental Army ready to fire (Aua!).

The following second brigade was most of the battle off-table. After one of my brigadier Generals was shot down with the front unit while trying to rallying them - I heard, why just cross the river with a follow-me-order, as if being on the other side closer to the enemy would have made my Sub-Hessians less vulnerable to fire.

So the CinC stepped in and let me use his command, unfortunately the other brigadiers hadn't moved and I rolled a blunder ... ts, ts, ts! The British lost a complete round of movement, welcome to my (Hessian-)world, hahaha!

After the initial shock the Commonwealth war effort was continued and the British nearly touched that fence (Huzzah!) they should have taken in the 7th turn, according to the battle objectives, followed up by the taking of the redoubt in front of the bridge of the river in the 12th turn. The Battle and our time ended, where another could have started.

In hindsight, I must say, the British were extremely lucky that the American just did not advance to the river on the whole front, otherwise our buffalo would not have been an unicorn, it would have been a cow.

But after all, it really was a wonderful game and I hope the few good pics can transfer a little bit of the delightful panorama – it is a stunning sight to see so many supremely painted figures on a wonderful table.

The figures were from Bill, Jack, Angus, Dave and me and the wonderful terrain by Dave.
Thanks to everybody involved!

The Centre left of the Rebels

The opposing Redcoats

The right flank of the Rebels, Redcoats in the sunshine

The Hessian Woodstock at the Riverbent

Jägers crossing an eternity

Rebel artillery controlling the river

The death valley of Rebels and Loyalists

The thin blue line

The epitome of the British approach

After 12 turns

The CinC helps out

The 35th Foot attacking the fence -line

The successful British left flank

The British centre on the other side of the blue

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Defending the Rhineland from friends of Düsseldorfers!!!

Again the arch-enemy entered the sacred realm of our beloved Emperor Maximilian, and they were coming for the Rhine!

I played the part of the Generalissimus Maximus and Bart performed more then convincing, as my trusted General de Cavalieribus, on my right flank. And we had a cunning plan, he told me, but he did not reveal this to me as to keep it a secret before the enemy's eye and ears! Hmm - silence is golden!

The Arch-French were played by Paul (the Irish) and Tim, who had a friend in Düsseldorf and even visited this place several times with out any shame! The plot began to thicken! They even forced us to utilise specifically chosen dice, selected for this procedure, out of their own sortiment - scandalous!

Never the less to defend Cologne and the Emperor, we deployed in Hohenzollern'sche oblique order and Bart, the SESWC-Blücher as we know him, attacked full charge into the meek-beer drinker of the other side (comment of the author: "scheel sick", which could be translated as "oblique side" is a Colognian reference (or more derogerative) to the "wrong" side of the Rhine). 

For the considerate gentleman, we were enjoying a manipulated version of Fields of Battle, with a little nod towards the early  16th Century.

According to the His Supreme Cunningness, my centre didn't not flinch or waiver, while under constant Swiss bombardment!!! The Full-metal-Calavieros on the right flank crashed into each other and what then happened, will be for ever shrouded in mystery, the French umpires (if ther ever was an oxymoron) were hectically consulting their rules books and our whole elite of the Rhineland were sent back home! How could that ever happen! The knights of the realm dissapeared, just so off the edge of the table. Treason! 

Then the enemy knights fought my half drunken unaware Landsknechts pike block and attacked and routed them! Also on the other flank I was getting surrounded by a French brigade, but that did not bother me as my brave arquebusiers were shooting and attacking the Swiss centre aaand nearly routing them. 

So even if the Imperials were tactically beaten, according to the still secret plan, we have morally won the battle, for reasons, which of course, cannot be disclosed, but we all strongly agree that is was much fun indeed!

Figures by me and Paul, Terrain by the club and scenario by Technicolor.

The Kaiser's Landsknechte

The Imperial camp

The Knights of the Realm

The order of battle at the beginning

The German gendarmes charge

The Feldschlangen defending the centre

The perfect oblique order

The view from the Kaiser tent

The clash of the titans

... and the German knights were sent home ...

And then the flank attack against the unaware Landsknechte

Still the centre did not fall before the shy Swiss

The heroic moment of my Arquebusiers and then the story abruptly ends ...

Friday, 16 January 2015

Festung Atbarah

Somewhere at the nile after a long day a British brigade wanted to refresh itself at a supply garrison called Atbarah, but as news travel fast in the desert, the Mahdis were already anticipating a possible victory and hoping to intercept and destroy the whole affair d'Anglaise. The Brigade just had to move to the Garrison and then back again to its little garden called Zariba, but at the horizont camels of the Mad Mullah were forming a thin ragged line ...
Bill and Campbell were pressing their advantage and the flanks of their cavallerous units with swift excecution to the centre of the field, between the the spikey Zariba and the sun-baked clay castle, my garrison. Bart and myself had a problem, it seemed. And so it went, Campbell's hordes attacked my castle and Bill tried to over run Bart's hastily crammed up brigade square. The screams of the attacking disenfrenchised Sudanese citizens of Her Majesty's empire soon filled the air and quickly mixed with the noise of rifle shots and the smell of gun powder. The fanatic hordes of the Mahdis came closer to the with British Guards and guns packed citadell, and – were shot to pieces.

Figures by Bart, Campbell and Bill, table-top embellishments by Campbell, Bill and the club. 

Don't miss the complete battle rap, you will find on Bart's site: 

Bill‘s famous Camel attack against the Gardners

more Camels

Bart's square

A view from the Zariba

Tension in the square is mounting (on camels)

The first move of the Mullahs

Campbell ante portas

The gun club

The British  horse tries to escape ...

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

35th Foot (the later Royal Sussex)

Raised in 1701 by the Earl of Donegall, later known as the Belfast Regiment, got their Regimental colours, quelle surprise, from William of Orange and up it went to the Battle of Cadiz under the control of the Royal Navy, then the defence of Gibraltar and the siege of Barcelona, aaand renamed "Gorge's Regiment of Foot" and after that to "Otway's Regiment of Foot" until 1751 they became a number.
In the French Indian War, they were at Fort William (ups, ouch!), but later made it onto the Fields of Abraham, they broke some old friends from Fort Williams, namely the Royal Roussilions. In the War of Independence they took part at Bunker Hill, Long Island and Harlem Heights and finally at the White Plains, by that time probably one of the more battle hardened regiments.

The penultimate British regiment, that is missing in my plans ... but as you know, you can get addicted to painting redcoats!

"Beware of the flowers, 'cause I'm sure they're gonna get you, Yeah!"
John Otway and Wild Willy Barrett, 1977

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Trenton, 26th December 1776

Happy new year, everybody! And a very happy ending for the Grenadiers of Colonel Rall.
We were re-fighting Trenton, yes –  a scenario most would deem futile, because of the odds.
Nevertheless, we tackled the strategic problem and tried to defend/capture Trenton with beverages in our hands!
Angus agreed to mime CinC Washington, while me and Bart played the sub-commanders/ division leaders Sullivan and Greene. Dougie and Andrew agreed to play the Hessians, outnumbered at least 4:1. The scenario objectives were for the American, to take Trenton and to destroy the Hessians completely, while the Hessians just needed to survive for 10 plus 1d6 turns.
The rebels would start and the Hessians could only move once the alarm was sounded, i.e. American units would be within 20" of the guards.
Well it didn't start too well for Washington, Sullivan's division took its time to arrive. Hence, and maybe the influence of a bit of Navy rum, Angus decided to march forward, thus giving the Germans time to get up! and run. Bart, as Brigadier general Greene, was the only one who was actually trying to outmanoeuver the Hessians position, but he blundered off the table for on crucial turn, he would later regret.
Then the American tide splashed over a half deserted village, Jäger, Dragoons and some dampened guns were the only defense of Trenton at this point. Lot's of skirmishing fights flared up, but in the end the snow and failed command rolls hindered the American to close in the Hessians effectively (they rolled a 1, i.e. it was 11 turns only!). (It showed again, that movement can be more important that combat!!)
Yes, Trenton was captured, and maybe some guns, but it wasn‘t the media event the rebel public relation management needed! – so even if it was a tactical draw, it would have been a desaster for Washington!

Angus' rap:
Bart's rap:

Figures are mostly Perry's (plastic and metal) painted by me or Jack (who assisted with the supply of half of the American army, Thanks again Jack!) the terrain was Bart, me and the club.

Trenton at the evening, Rall and his Hessians are drinking Brandy

Brigadier Stirling is arriving with the 1st Brigade

More and more American brigades arrive and Washington orders the attack

Sulivan arrives late and crosses the "Petty's Run"

But the Hessians are already evacuating Trenton

Washington drives his column over the bridge

The American army pours into the village centre

Rally at the orchard, Rall said

The Hessians retreating further minus a few guns, but all their lines intact

The Delawares chasing the Hessians

The German commander censores the encirclement attempt

The 1st Virinia Regiment battles with Rall‘s Grenadiers

Too late too few, the Rebels watch the Hessians dissappear into the icy storm...