Friday, 17 August 2018

More Late Roman Archers

I've had a lot of Late Roman Gripping Beast plastics ready to paint for ages now, but I really needed a break from Romans, plus it was too hot to paint and I was also on holiday for a while. Anyway, I've completed all my remaining Late Roman archers, eight more designed as additions to my Saga warband, above and, below 16 archers based up ready to be used in Sword and Spear. Of course, I will be using all my Saga Romans for S&S too, I just need to buy a load of movement trays for them.

I am planning for my S&S army to be on 12 cm wide bases, mainly 6 cm deep, but deeper for cavalry, obviously. My idea is that foot units will be on 12 x 6 cm bases, which can be stacked one behind another to make up large units, with skirmishers also on 12 x 6 cm bases, but with only six figures per base. I am hoping that I can get Warbases to make these up as a special, together with a number of 12 x 6 cm bases with 4 rectangular 4 x 2 cm slots for cavalry. I need to ask about this, though.

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Woo Hoo! The postman brought me a present

OK, so it wasn't a huge surprise, because I'd already had the email, but the postman delivered my Freyja's Wrath Kickstarter today. Here is the box;

Then the nice friendly extras that makes shopping with Bad Squiddo a fun experience;

And finally, the shiny bits. I have lots of lovely new toys here. Enough for a Saga warband with extra shieldmaidens to give me a nice choice of units, plus a few extra that I bought simply because they are really nice models, but which I am certain will find a purpose, because nice models always deserve to end up on the table. I am not going to stop with Saga. These women are going to crop up a a fair few futures projects, I'm sure. I just need to decide how best to use them.

The minis themselves are lovely crisp castings, with virtually no flash. The poses are terrific and there is plenty of detail to paint, which I reckon is definitely a Good Thing. I know which ones are going to get painted first, so they are heading for the front of the painting queue already.

So, shipping the Kickstarter was delayed a bit, but there are perfectly good reasons why that happened, so I'm not going to complain. Good things are worth waiting for, and these are certainly good things. 

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

IPMS Avon Show, Thornbury (near Bristol) this coming Sunday

IPMS Avon is holding its 28th annual show in conjunction with Lincombe Barn Wargames Society on Sunday 5th August 2018.
The show is being held at the Thornbury Leisure Centre, north of Bristol where there will be over 2,300m2 of display space spread over 3 large, well lit halls. There is also ample free parking for participants and visitors alike.

The club will be running the Bring and Buy sale, a display table showing the games we play and also a demo/participation game of What A Tanker in 15mm.

Tuesday, 31 July 2018

Back from holiday - time for another Alien Squad Leader AAR

Sunday was my first wargaming activity since the beginning of July and it was a 200pt game of Alien Squad Leader with Owen at the club. Owen has recently brought his Human Imperial Strikeforce army up to 200pts, so I knew that I'd be facing that particular enemy. I decided to take my Alien Imperial army, but with a few modifications since its last outing, back in December last year. I decided to drop the power-armoured Elites and replace them with a Phase tank with an aiming device and a homing missile. I thought that the extra long-range firepower might come in handy.

The battle scenario we fought was Scenario 4 - Envelopment. This meant that Owen could reserve up to four stands to deploy from a flank and I had to defend an objective. As the defender, I set up the table. Most of the cover was on my side, understandably. I was unsure where the Human reinforcements would arrive, so I thought it might be useful to station some robotic forces on the left, where they could operate without any need for a command stand.

In the centre I had two urban areas. In the left-hand one I had my phase tank and some troops and a heavy weapon stand. The right-hand one was the objective I was defending.

I put my other Heavy Droid in the objective area, supported by another H/W stand, the Force Commander (Inspirational Leader) and some more infantry (behind the buildings).

I deployed more infantry on my right flank and had all my Trained Beasts and Tribal Auxiliaries, including a sub-commander behind the main lines.

Before long, Owen's Strikeforce advanced, taking advantage of its Sudden Strike rule.

I began to move troops up to counter, hoping that my infantry on the right flank hill could defend against the deployment point there.

Things began to go well for me. My Superior Energy Weapons were scoring plenty of hits on the power-armoured Humans. I was worried about the light vehicles emerging on my right flank, though.

I brought the phase tank into play, scoring a few hits, destroying a Human APC and pinning the Human heavy weapons team in the ruins across the table. My Heavy Droids were in play, but the Robotic infantry had nothing to do. I tried to being them closer to the action. 

My Trained Beasts despite a few stands getting shot up, crashed into hand-to-hand combat with an APC, ripping the vehicle to pieces with their claws and generally going on a rampage. This, for me was the turning point in the battle. The Beasts made mincemeat of stand after stand of Humans (who had already taken a few hits). I did lose the most successful set of Beasts in the end, but the rest of the Beasts went into a mad fury, ripping the light vehicles to pieces and forcing the Humans to breaking point.

Eventually I only needed to knock out one more Human stand to force Owen's troops to break. I managed to do this with some accurate fire from a H/W stand. Game over.

This was a tricky battle really, a lot less one-sided than it appears from the pictures. If Owen had succeeded in his plan of unloading his troopers and having them storm into the objective, I am sure that he could have won, but my Beasts really were on top form. In the end I only lost two stands of Beasts and one of Imperial Infantry.

Monday, 23 July 2018

North Star plastic Undead Encounters figures

I've had these figures lying around for about a year now. I assembled and undercoated them last September and then set them aside while other things leapfrogged them in the painting queue. However, I did do bits of work on them here and there and just before I went away on holiday I set some time aside to finally finish them off.

First, here are three Zombies, four Ghouls, a skeleton erupting from a grave, a skeleton Giant Rat and a marker. I enjoyed painting these, lots of scope for decaying skin tones and exposed rotting flesh and organs. 

Secondly, here are ten skeleton warriors. These were also fun to paint, with a liberal application of Light Rust wash which is actually intended for vehicles, but looks pretty good on their weapons and armour.

All these figures started off with a coat of Army Painter Skeleton Bone spray and the rags and skin tones were built up with blended colours. Armour was gunmetal, brass and copper dry-brushed onto black. Finally, before finishing them off with rust wash, they all got an inking with Windsor & Newton Peat Brown. Once everything was dry, I did the bases with black railway ballast, which was dry-brushed in pale grey and then they were spray varnished.

Thursday, 5 July 2018

Another ACW Sharp Practice AAR

This game was a few weeks ago now at the club, between Brian, commanding the Union side and my force of Confederates. Both sets of troops were my Peter Pig 15mm ACW ones. The buildings and fences were also mine. The rest of the terrain was the club's.

We used forces for 1864 from the Sharp Practice rulebook, plus a couple of basic supports (medics, extra Status I leaders);

Leader, Status III
Three Groups of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets
Leader, Status II
Two Group of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets
Leader, Status I
One Group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets
Leader, Status I
One Group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets

UNION FORCE, 1863‐1865
Leader, Status III
Leader, Status I
Three Groups of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets
Leader, Status II
Two Group of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets
Leader, Status I
One Group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets

The mission selected was Scenario Two; Sweep The Table, and the table was laid out as seen below. The Confederate deployment was from the bottom left in the first photo;

The Union force would deploy from the road at the bottom right;

We modified the objective so that the sweeping force's objective would be capturing the opposition's deployment zone. The Confederates were the sweeping force due to their higher Force Morale. I began by deploying skirmishers. I had a plan, and that involved tying the Union troops down as early as possible.

The Union troops began to arrive; skirmishers to the fore and a column marching behind.

My sharpshooters were soon in action, sniping away from the edge of the cornfield and causing casualties on their opposite numbers.

I quickly brought on my second group of skirmishers who moved up to add their fire.

Meanwhile the Union main force slowly began to deploy behind the skirmish screen.

My main force began to arrive, two groups advancing in line to take up a position on my right flank, while the rest moved to my left.

The main Union firing line advanced towards the central farmstead.

My left-hand skirmishing group moved up to threaten them.

My main force began its march along my left flank. So far, things were working pretty smoothly.

My right-hard skirmishers came under sustained fire, taking shock and a casualty. Their leader was able to rally off some shock and they advanced to fire again.

Hiding in the long corn, they began to pepper the Union troops with accurate musketry, causing casualties on the two groups advancing along the road.

My troops advanced slowly.

Eventually ending up as a three group formation behind a line of snake fencing.

However, this was a feint, and the formation moved off on a flanking march, behind the dense forest on the Union right.

Back in the centre, my advanced group of skirmishers, much reduced, were skulking in a patch of green corn.

I needed to keep the Union force engaged along the road.

The fighting was keeping the main Union body in a defensive line on a hill and the other two infantry groups were holding the chapel and the road junction.

My marching column on the left carried on moving through the woods.

I began to advance in the centre through the cornfields.

My flanking force finally deployed into line formation, ready to threaten the deployment point.

My left-hand skirmishers kept up their fire on the main Union body. So far, so good.

Finally, the Union realised the threat on their right. Groups of infantry began to move across to counter my advance.

This led them to a strong position in the corn and trees, where they were able to engage the Confederates.

This developed into a firefight, with both sides suffering casualties and shock.

Time was running out, but Union Force Morale was plummeting and casualties and shock were mounting. Having all but surrendering their left and centre, the Union was struggling to defend its deployment point.

At this point, we called a halt, agreeing that the outcome was a victory for Johnny Reb.