Monday, 22 May 2017

Partizan Part 3 - The Shopping

No convention wouldn't be complete without shopping

Bedford Truck - £12 on ebay, £10 in the show but no instructions

Bases and magnetic tape - Death in the Dark Continent basing to do

The Show freebie - Hemmingway in SCW. I need more incidental figures and this is a great one.

Foundry AWI British high Command - for my challenge with Miles in the next painting challenge

Pulp Figures German Seebattalion, tramp steamer crew (VBCW) and 1930's film crew - more incidental stuff

Last Valley Hedges (£24). need a lot of hedges and these are great

Napoleonic light dragoons for the Old Guard Napoleonic project. Like an idiot I was supposed to get the Hussars but these will be fine

Finally an unexpected song that I found in the cd pile whilst looking for something to drive down to Dave's to. My favourite type, dark, subersive and makes me smile. I may be disturbed

Partizan Part 2 - The Other Battles

One of the problems with running a demonstration game is that you don't get a lot of time to look around. This is more than off set by the joy of gaming but I didn't get loads of time to look at other stuff. These were the nearby games

Our neighbours, Northern War? I love the river, really well done.

The overall winners, also next door. WW1 battle of Stokes Yard (?). All scratch built terrain. Very nice

Something wet

Kokoda Trail, barking mad terrain



1980's Cold War gone hot river crossing


Poles vs Swedes. The most beautiful figures, lots of Winged Hussars. My favourite to look at by Westbury Wargames Club from leamington
As you can see the standard was very high. Excited by the great reception we recieved I think that Dave is really going to go for it in the future.

Partizan Part 1 - The Battle

So me and Dave went down to Partizan on Saturday and were joined by Stig Kelly on Sunday for the main event. Saturday night we went for a curry with Simon Miller of To The Strongest fame and Andrew and Ian, partners in crime. Great night. At the curry Andrew declared that I've always found lamb curries disappointing,
Bright and early Sunday morning we trotted off to Newark  Showground to set up our demonstration battle. It's my favourite venue, spacious with great games and loads of stuff to buy - more of those in posts 2 and 3.
Dave had brought a couple of Mahdits (OK 750 inf and about 150 cavalry).

The set up. The Britsh are building a railroad across the desert. There is an observation balloon keeping an eye on proceedings. This was the most photographed item inn the whole show and was loved by all 1000 visitors.

In one corner an Indian Brigade has arrived to support the railway defenders

The Railway defenders have built a zariba to defend their position and are a Naval detactment with 2 Gardner guns (one on the train), the Irish Guards (could have been the Scots Guards) and the New South Wales Artillery. There were lots of colourful characters dotted around including engineers, signalers, the press and the dirty postcard sellers. 

In the opposite corner was an Egyptian column, the survivors of of a losing battle, making their way to safety. A couple of Mahdist cavalry units have appeared in turn one to block their advance

The Mahdists have stated to appear. We were playing Black Powder, a nice cinematic set of rules, and Dave was driving the Madhists using random activation rules from Sands of the Sudan. They worked very well indeed. Me and Stig were the Brits.

The Mahdist cavalry charged the Egyptian column and routed 2 battalions of the shell shocked infantry before the Egyptian Lancers saw them off. The remaining battalion and a field gun formed a square and tried to hold out for the rest of the battle. As for the Lancers....

A huge force of cavalry arrives in one corner and infantry are starting to appear in the wadi

"Stand To". The train defenders man the barricades as Fuzzies rise up and start to advance

Further away another large force of Mahdists attack the other end of the zariba and the Indian brigade moves into position. I have a lot of firepower but there are a lot of enemy and they are everywhere. The Gardner gun on the back of the train opens fire and jams immediately. This sand is going to be the death of us.

There is a gap in the defence. One end of my zariba is only manned by 3 skirmish sections and a field gum. A unit of mtd infantry is providing some support but will it be enough

The Mahdist cavalry is massing for an attack

They are faced by 2 regiments of Bengal Lancers

The Mahdists fail their activation and the 2nd Naval Gardner gun unleashes a devastating volley, 9 consecutive rolls of 4,5 or 6 routs the front unit.

Mahdists everywhere

Mahdists launch a full out attack  but the Indians are in position. Could they stop the attack

The skirmishers holding their section of the zariba are killed and the Mahdists are in amongst the baggage.

With Mahdists pressing on all sides a spectacular activation roll allows an Indian battalion to rush to the gap in the zariba and hold the line. Phew

The Egytian Lancers have left their infantry and are attacking the Mahdists from the rear and creating bloody hell with the rear of the Mahdists, 2 units gone, about 10,000 to go.

The remaining Egyptian infantry are trapped on a hill surrounded by skirmishing camel riders. They will be fine and medals will be awarded 

Faced with a huge and growing Mahdist horde the Indian brigade, 2 huge units in line, advance and attack. The railway must be saved. Doesn't go well but the Indians hold their own. The Mahdists break into the zariba again but face another Gardner gun that manages 8 consecutive hits and they are stopped. Gardner guns are fab when needed

With the infantry holding on, just, the Bengal Lancers decide it is their time for glory and they charge the huge enemy cavalry force.

The 1st two lines of the Mahdist cavalry are completely routed leaving only 2 more lines left. They have watched the 3 lines in front of them rout through them. Time to leave.

The zariba is holding, just when in true Errol Flynn style the Egyptian lancers smash into the back of the attackers taking out 2 more units. The Indians are beating their oppostion. The Brits have won.
This was a fantastic battle and a close run thing. Heroic actions by the Egyptian Lancers, the Bengal Lancers, the Gardner Guns and a single Indian Battalion saved the day.
We talked to a huge number of people, they all loved the battle, The battle mat from Tiny Miniatures was a resounding success and Dave should have charged commission. And then at the end we were told that we had come 2nd in the best club demonstration game. There was no 2nd prize but it was nice to be appreciated. The table that won was, in my opinion, better than ours (more of that in part 2) but I think that there were better games than it. The standard was very high.
My best convention day ever and we will be at Partizan 2 in August and at Battleground in December.

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Partizan here we come

So today me and Dave Docherty are off to Partizan, http://www.partizan. Dave is getting his toys out and the old guard are putting on a Mahdist game with a train and a balloon and hopefully enough Brits. The event is tomorrow so a gentle drive down today, an overnight in Newark with some form of curry and then a full days gaming tomorrow.
We are DG16 near to Warlord games. Think dave is going to live stream the game so if you can't make it you can watch another british disaster. I'll post the link when I know it

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Things to fight on and over and in

After a few weeks of working in the evenings I've caught up with my proper job. Now I have some hobby time.
I've been looking at gaming mats but they are stunningly expensive. Whiles walking through Wilko yesterday I spied as dust sheet. Its plastic backed and made of an open cotton weave. It was £10 and best of all it was 12ft by 9ft. So I bought it and trotted off to the art shop to buy some spray paints and started to spray it. I then went back again today to buy some more green. It took 3 cans of green and 1/2 can each of olive green and a light brown

Hanging on the washing ready to paint

Day 1 end, 1/3 painted


The full gloriousness of it. I really like it and hopefully it will work well and not bad for £28.

A few weeks ago I bought 6 mdf buildings from ebay  for about £22. I've painted them up and they look pretty good with a pebbledashed coating

Finally I bought a load of fine grained, firm expanded polystyrene blocks about 4" long for a few pence only

The block

The carve up nicely and make cool walls.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

The Battle of Greenhead - a tale of Treachery

Today I went over to Matt's Dungeon for another epic VBCW battle. The Fascist Northumbrian Army was launching another assault on Carlisle. The Carlisle Royalists met us at the village of Greenhead. This battle was unusual as both sides contained fascists and forces from the local Constabulary. Matt had written some blue on blue rules which were activated by drawing a die from the dice bag (we were playing Bolt Action as usual). The terrain was beautiful as usual and dominated by an urban environment split by a railway cutting what could only be crossed by vehicles at the humpbacked bridge.
Let battle commence
The view from Matt's side, a mix of regulars, irregulars, armoured cars, motorbike MMG,, an AT gun, a mortar and a plane

The regulars and the Women's Institute

Carlisle Golf Club

Cavalry and motorbikes to the fore. Standing alone is a communist agitator, Svetlana, who is one of the objectives She will move randomly each turn

My forces advance around the church, Northumbrian Special Constabulary (The Alnwick Vampires), 3 squads of paramilitary thugs

More Vampires and a truck full of Police

THe rest of my force arrives, mortars, the Northumbrian Rangers, Marines, female sailors, a Renault FT tank and an Eberhardt armoured car.

Police debus in town

The Royalist plane swoops out of the sun and pins a squad of Vampires

My truck mounted AT gun and a Lancia full of Vampires guard the approaches as Royalist cavalry makes a mad dash across the bridge. A direct hit of HE stops them and they dismount and enter the house.

The Royalist AC's and infantry take up position across the bridge

as the rest of the Royalists advance

The Royalist mortar tries a specualtive shot at one of my Lancias and brews it up. Note in Bolt Action mortars are pretty poor needing a 6 to hit on 1st shot. Lucky boy

The Royalist AT gun takes up position covering the bridge. I have plenty of stuff to capture the town but this is bound to slow me down.

The plane attacks again and strafes the mortars. This is slowing me down and becoming a pain

Still no problem, I advance my AC to pin the dismounted cavalry in the house. No luck this time but plenty of ....... Boom the mortar fires again and the AC is immobilised

This bloody mortar - yes this one - has hit and wrecked 2 armoured vehicles with 2 consecutive first shots.

The Blue on Blue dice is drawn and the result is that one of Matt's fascist units swaps side, Better still it's a regular unit inside a house on the middle of Matt's left. I have wrecked his defence and I never had to touch a dice. Matt's infantry converge on the traitorous unit as I lay fire into the Golfers, bloody stupid game.

A burst of fire  from my remaining Lancia takes out the plane, I do like shooting down planes and it happens alot.

One of my sections of Vampires assaults the dismounted cavalry in the house and clears it easily. I own all of this side of the railway

My Renault takes the opportunity to advance and open fire on one of the ACs. I miss and the Royalist mortar fires again and brews it up. I've lost 3 of my 4 armoured vehicles to this mortar. They will have to be punished. At the same time the golfers assault the turncoat fascists but are killed. However another squad of Royalists follows up and kills my brave and wise allies.

I am rocked back but Matt takes is AT gun off ambush and I spot an opportunity. I double move my Lancia down the road (48") and it swerves past both ACs and halts well through the Royalist lines with a full load of  Vampires. Matt is in trouble now and will have to turn 

On my left Matt has launched an attack across the railway lines and although they get across and take out 2 of my units they are overwhelmed.

I'm stuck trying to cross the railway but then blue on blue action comes to my rescue again and another of Matt's units swaps side. Once of my mortars takes out the up-armoured car and Iown the row of houses

Behind the lines my Lancia has unloaded the Vampires and they move into the garden under heavy fire

I've hit the mortar but when Matt goes to activate he gets a FUBAR roll and the crew leg it.

Matt has circled the wagons and whilst I have the infantry to get him he still has the AT gun and 2 ACs which are going to make it very difficult for me to get across

In the cutting there is a squad fight

The final positions.

It was a great battle and a draw. To move forward will be too costly and there was no time to pound him to dust.
In reality the battle was defined by 3 mortar shots and 2 turncoat units. Carlisle is safe. for now.
As always Matt is a great host and the battle field was a joy to behold. Next stop Partizan