Saturday, October 2, 2021

Battle of Pleasant Hill, 1864

Some time ago, Archduke Piccolo and I decided to play a 1/72 ACW game, a great set of "old school" rules with lots of dice rolling and very bloody battles. It has been a while so I cannot recall the detail, but a fierce confederate attack was held by the union lines.

The figures are a mix of Airfix, Esci, Italeri, Revell and 20mm pewter.


Tuesday, September 21, 2021

All talk and no trousers.

A full 18 months since my last post, a new record.

Well, despite being in New Zealand, the global epidemic has hit me very hard. My industry destroyed, had a large pay-cut for a year, had to make redundancies and see a lot of clients businesses go under or have at least 90% staff loss. That is the way it sometimes goes, some ends up getting the smelly end of the toilet brush and the alternative was far worse, dead industry and sick community. I have a lot of friends and family globally, so I saw what they went through and wouldn’t wish it any other way. It certainly felt like "going down with the ship" at times, but it did highlight to me the importance of this hobby in my life. However, we are still here and things are looking up for 2022.

Recently there was an excellent mental health YouTube post - I recommend viewing it. 

Despite the extremely stressful times, I found that painting gave me that nice release away from it all.  I have accomplished quite a lot in this time, painting and gaming, but when it came to the blog I simply could not be bothered. A few times to be honest, I have even been tempted to simply exit this hobby, but that is more to do with my accumulation of unfinished project, so I have been sorting those out. 

I hope to document these projects more, as I have completed a vast amount of painting and basing. So below is a small sample of my 2020/2021 results work, and it is almost purely all 1/72 scale from a variety of periods.

I plan to make posts on the completed forces, and you can read all the Colonial Campaigns at Archduke Piccolo

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Sailing up the Limpopo.

Archduke Piccolo made an excellent account of Portable Wargames Colonial action, so I will not attempt to re-write it.

For the original positions, I went with several baggage trains, intermingled with foot troops and cavalry bringing up the rear. I had hoped the Cavalry could use the clear ground to some effect, but in the end, they were "swamped" with the rest.
As bad luck has it, a large force of M'Butu was stationed mid-table and close to the column, there was not a lot I could do here, apart from form ranks and prepare to receive them.  
The gunboat looked impressive, but Azeitonian gunnery appeared to have been influenced by the hot weather or rum. The did not achieve a lot during the whole game.
The advance party fixed bayonets to repulse the initial attacks.  This advance guard survived most of the battle despite being in the thick of it.
The M'Butu swarm out of the bush, overwhelming most of the line. 
Governor Relaxado rallies what is left of his fragile command on a small rise on the banks of the Limpopo.

As the M'Butu withdraw, a mysterious party watches the forces separate...

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Prussian Cavalry

I am being very productive, but taking photos is not high on the list at the moment so there is some delay on that front. The following figures are painted with basing just being finished, main flocking is down but just needs the final wave of bits and pieces to add on. 

The 2nd East Prussian Cuirrassiers, which are Hinchcliffe 25mm figures which I quite like. (Standard is yet to be added)

2nd Silesian Hussars, an old unit of Old Glory that recently were refurbished with some additional basing needed.

Currently, I have two other units to finish, both Old Glory Uhlans but the lovely wire lances I purchased something like "7 years ago" have gone walkabout. I suspect I might have to open every box I have to find them as they will be hiding somewhere obscure.

As I overfilled the PVA Palette, I also based some 15mm ACW figures I have for a "rainy day". I picked most of these up mainly for when I wanted to play-test Fire and Fury rules or other ACW rulesets, the confederates on the left are actually over 21 years old. They are TTG figures (or battleline in NZ).

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Exciting 1/72 news

While waiting to pick up my father from an appointment, I popped into Acorn Models as they had recently had a shipment in of new 1/72 kits. To my surprise, Airfix is releasing a kit of old sets and to my surprise, I found a great classic...

 Allegedly, they plan to release ALL the old sets and one of those is the old Firefly kit that I have looked for a while.

At the same time Italeri re-releases the old Warsaw pact, just in time!

Sunday, February 16, 2020

One Hour Wargames

One Hour War games are rather, paper Scissors, Mortars, but good for some simle fun.

Romanian Column flies down a road to it's inevitable destruction.  I had to exist via the road, and the Soviets on it refused to move, my column was overrun by a flank attack.

Italian Armour, gets ready to swamp a Russian defence.

A botched relief. Soviets attack a town while inept Italians send one unit at a time into the meat grinder. This came down to a infantry slog, with the Soviets taking advantage of the town as cover.

I bought several boxes along to this game, mostly Romanians and Italian. To my surprise and, alarm I found I had not finished painting most of them. I must have been in a rush 2 years ago, so I spent last evening finishing 33% of the force. The rest I shall do tonight, so that my Romanians for command decision are ready to go.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Battle of Elchingen, 1805

Battle of Elchingen, 1805

Today, Mark hosted Ion and me to a refight of Elchingen, from the 1805 Campaign.

The figures are all Marks collection as he hosted it in his lounge on a somewhat average summers day.

I took on the role of General Riesch, commanding a mostly poor Austrian force defending a ridge-line between two villages. MY forces were all on the table as of the start of the game, whilst the advance French forces would be bolstered on turn 2 and turn 6. The Austrian forces had a single battery, a smattering of Grenadiers, Cavalry and raw troops, with these forces being deployed behind the hills, in the town and on the far left flank.

The orders from Mack, reminded me of a Tarot card reading. Something like, "oh, something might happen, maybe, yes, no, maybe so, mmm yes, you think about that". So, having commanded a Spanish Napoleonic army for 15 years, I decided to what I did best with raw troops, defend, reinforce key points with Veteran troops and hope for a dashing charge to sweep away the enemy at a crucial moment.

The initial Austrian deployments below.  All Austrian troops move forwards, supporting the villages and also making themselves visible on the ridge-line  hoping to draw French into the central position.


General Reisch, far far behind the front lines.

The French advance.

 The village resulted in a game long siege, the French assaulted time after time, slowly gaining a foothold but at great cost in lost units. At a key moment, with a whole Austrian brigade on death's door, I replaced them with Veteran troops who held half the town for the rest of the day.

Austrian reserves attempt to push the right flank

 Attempting to interrupt the French Assaults, Cuirassiers and Grenadiers swoop over the hill. The Cuirrasiers charged, breaking two units before them before retiring back to safety.

The far most Austrian forces seize the other village in the face of Cavalry
 The French reinforcements sweep across the ridge to face the serried ranks of Austrians conscripts.

French Chasseurs charge across the ridge line, but are seen off by Uhlans, saving that section of the line from certain defeat. 
The left flank then collapsed after a unit broke and took most of it's brigade away with them, a rule mechanic came into play here that I thought was tedious, in that when a unit breaks, those around it take a morale test. However, if a unit breaks as a result of that initial morale the rest of the force takes another morale check. So in a single turn, a veteran unit had to roll morale 3 times, as a unit then broke on the second round which I thought was over the top.Simply in terms of play-ability, I did not really think too much of it, as I have seen a similar problem in another rule-set (A unit of 95th Rifles  had to roll morale 6 times in a minute in a 15mm game). But hey, lots of rules of odd mechanics and I was handling a raw army.
The casualties, 12 Austrians Units broken during the game. At around the 3/4 mark, we had lost only 5, however the great rout of the left flank increased this by 7 in around a single turn.


All in all it was a great game, Ion thought the game was over half way through for his French, but to me, it was far from over. My raw troops did  well, but in the end simply could not hold on long enough. Thanks to Mark for hosting!