Sunday, August 30, 2015

EB AWI at The 6th Annual Hobby Bunker Game Day

This past Saturday I ran my Electronic Brigadier Freemen's Farm scenario at the Hobby Bunker's 6th annual game day. The game day was held in the Hobby Bunker's gaming area which contained six separate gaming tables. The Hobby Bunker is appropriately named. Being in a basement retail space, my cell phone WiFi hotspot didn't have a solid signal. The Hobby Bunker's house WiFi worked fairly well sometimes, but had occasional 'hiccups' which caused the tablets fits. The players were all very understanding, and considering the networking issues, we still managed to play 20 turns and play the game to a firm conclusion.

This battle was a case of two 18th century armies deploying at different rates. The Americans got their lines set up quickly, the crown forces came in a bit more piecemeal. The Americans got a lot of early two on one firefights which they took well advantage of. Casualties early in the game were three for two in favor of the rebels. By the time the British pressed the issue withe the bayonet the damage was done. Victimized were the British 20th and 9th foot plus the British and Hessian grenadiers. The cost for the Americans, the 2nd and 4th New York with the 2nd New Hampshire in reserve in bad shape but remaining on the battlefield under the watchful eye of General Poor. The final statistics are shown below:

British Forces
  • Army cohesion: 82.1%
  • Total Casualties: 418 / 3709 (11.3%)
  • 4 units dispersed
  • 1 shaken units
American Forces
  • Army cohesion: 84.1%
  • Total Casualties: 269 / 3740 (7.2%)
  • 2 units dispersed
  • 1 shaken units
Thanks to all the players for hanging in there with the network problems. I had a great time running the game, and from the smiles in the photos it looks like everyone had fun playing despite the slight technical issues.

Adam has a write up of the game on his Fencing Frog blog with more photos.

The state of the battlefield at the end of the game with all the gaming materials cleared:

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Last of the Veteran Carthaginian Hoplites

I've been saying I'm finished with my Carthaginian army for about six months now. I guess this is one of those armies that will never be completely finished. In this case I can say with reasonable certainty  that these are the last veteran hoplites that I'll be painting for the army. These figures, are converted from Roman triarii figures from the Old Glory Republican Roman line. I've snipped off the plumes and of course painted the shields appropriately. The white unit has a combination of homemade decals I had left over and hand-painted shields. The red shields are left plain to match the rest of the units in the red wing. This brings each of my veteran hoplite wings up to the full strength of four stands.

The painting on the chain mail is dry brushing over black primer. The rest of the figures are block painted and washed with my homemade magic wash

Next up on the painting table some late war WWII British infantry a.k.a. 'Tommies'. I'm going to mix in some WWII here and there to add some variety and keep me motivated to paint. These two units lingered on the table quite a while. Partially this was due to ancients burn-out and partially due to personal/household reasons. Either way I'm back at the table!

Moderns with MarkD

Last Saturday my friend MarkD, from MarkD's Gaming Site had a few of us to his gaming bunker to play some moderns using his Bolt Action modern modifications. The game was a play test of his game for our club's upcoming game night. The mission, a UN force has to escort a VIP from a Serbian-held area. Ralph, Ed and I were the UN forces. Ralph was the UN Canadians, Ed the French and I was the Belgians and French armor. Charlie and Mike were the Serbian insurgents.
Charlie and Mike deployed in a blocking position behind a river and quickly collapsed on the Canadians defending the town. Ralph defended the first wave attack on the town slaughtering an entire squad of Charlie's Serbians. From there it turned pear shaped for the UN forces as Charlie and Mike quickly picked them apart while Ed and I tried to catch up with them across the river. My armored car crew was drunk, they had to be. They missed every shot with their huge main gun, even when shooting at one of the Serbian-held buildings in the town. Yes, they couldn't even hit the broad side of a house!
Little by little the Serbians whittled the Canadians down to just the VIP bodyguard and finally the Serbian sniper took her out - bang! right between the eyes. Fun game, good scenario, and the UN vehicles are just WAY too cool looking. Thanks for the fun day Mark.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Northern Conspiracy August 2015 Game Night

Last Friday I hosted another game of AWI Electronic Brigadier at our club's August game night. The battle was something I've always wanted to do - an alternate history game using AWI troops but for a Napoleonic battle. The battle was Quatre Bras. The Americans took the British role and the British the French role. I superimposed the battle into the 1777 Saratoga campaign with some fiddling to make things work.

The Americans had to defend 'the crossroads' which were where Quatre Bras was in the Napoleonic battle. The British needed to capture the crossroads, pushing through the defending Americans.  Photoed below are the Americans, Greg, Ralph and Dick.

I was pressed into service as a British wing commander along with CinC Bob and wing commander Rob. Early on the stream caused the British, myself especially, trouble and it took a while to get our troops on line. Dick got some early two on one volleys against my approaching red coats. Once on line I was able to return the two on one volleys in kind along with help down the line from Rob. On the left flank Bob beat up on the Connecticut militia with his Hessians. Eventually Rob and I were able to wear down Dick's command of Poor's brigade, routing one NH and one NY continental unit. In the center the British lights wavered but were hanging on by a thread. The British grenadiers also took a thrashing but were holding firm when we called the game.

In the end it was the British quality that decided the battle. Although both armies suffered similar casualties, the Americans had more units dispersed or in poor morale at the end of the game. The post game statistics were as follows:

British Forces
  • Army cohesion: 77.0%
  • Total Casualties: 309 / 3909 (7.9%)
  • 0 units dispersed
  • 2 shaken units
American Forces
  • Army cohesion: 83.6%
  • Total Casualties: 313 / 3740 (8.4%)
  • 3 units dispersed
  • 3 shaken units

The other two games were Michael's WWII air combat Aldertag (Eagle Day) August 1940 Battle of Britain (Axis & Allies Angels 20) game and Phil's 15mm Regimental Fire & Fury Sabine Crossroads game. I apologize to both Michael and Phil for not getting many photos. Having to GM and play in my game I didn't even really have time to take decent photos of my own game.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

(Not) Brother Against Brother Napoleonic Skirmish Game #2

Last Friday my friend Ed had Byron, Charlie, Mike, George and I over for another go at his Brother Against Brother Napoleonic house rules. This time George and I were the French and Byron, Charlie and Mike were the Prussians. Like the first go around, the Prussians got a good jump on the half-timber barn and commanded that flank from it. George and I pushed into the park with our forces. George had about the same luck pressing the Prussian left as the first playing of the scenario (none at all). Pressed from the hard cover of the barn, I eventually also withered. The Prussians handled the French roughly and won the scenario by a good margin. Well played to them.

This is a good scenario and a second play reinforced the fact that Ed's house rules are all good steps forward in an already good game system. I'm looking forward to more games using Ed's modifications.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

(Not) Brother Against Brother Napoleonic Skirmish Game

Today, the Saturday of Historicon, those of us who stayed home were invited our our friend Ed's house for "Historicon North". Planned was a day of gaming with multiple games. In truth we had so much fun playing the first game that we played straight through lunch and pretty much spent the day on it. I think I speak for all who were present, it was totally worth it!

The game was Ed's first unveiling of his house rules for the popular Brother Against Brother ACW skirmish rules.  Ed's changes include a new dice-based morale check system which includes risk to officers and special events. It also contains some formation choices for units that are on the 'nice and simple' side of complexity. Just enough for flavor without being difficult to use.

The game was a meeting engagement between the French played by Mike and Charlie and the Prussians played by George, Peter and myself. Control of three of five terrain objectives would win the game. Four of the objectives were quadrants of a garden park and the fifth was a villa outside the park. The Prussian plan was to try for the villa, but if the French beat us to it. switch our attack to one of the French quadrants of the park.

Early on it looked good for the French to snipe one of our quadrants. Just as Peter stabilized things there, George took control of the villa. This position would prove dominant for the remainder of the game. On the other flank, Peter's green Prussian Reserve company was unstoppable. They simultaneously dueled a French line unit and conducted charge attacks against a French grenadier unit in the flank. Holding out to the last two men they held the flank and helped drive the French from our quadrant sealing the game. That unit only had 2 privates and a sergeant left at the end of the battle, but before they fight again they'll be a lieutenant and two sergeants!

Thanks for the great game Ed. It's was the next best thing to going to Historicon.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Northern Conspiracy July 2015 Game Night

Last Friday our club had our monthly game night for July. Due to the holiday week turnout was low, but I did get to play in a great ancients game hosted by my friend Don. The game featured Ralph's Marathon to Marius rules and was a historic scenario, The Battle of Telamon. Don used 15mm figures, which worked just fine with Ralph's rules even though all our play tests were done using 28mm figures. Don and I played the Romans who surrounded a Gaul raiding army from two sides. Bob and Ralph played the defending Gauls.

The Gauls quickly sorted out that the Romans would be attacking from two sides and formed up a good defence with Bob probing my Etruscan infantry with his cavalry aggressively. Don's command took a while to get on line while my command fought the Gauls doing well against Ralph and approximately even against Bob. Don's command was able to do very well against Ralph's opposite battle line sealing the victory for Rome. In the end the two armies were only 3 victory chips different from each other with both armies starting with approximately 30 chips, so the victory for Rome was marginal. The scenario which Don play tested three times was well balanced. With die rolls being more even the outcome would have easily been a coin flip for either side to win.

I was running late to the event so I went directly from work and didn't have my camera with me. Because of this I stole the above photo from our club website, courtesy of the club president Phil. The rest of his photos can be seen on our club gallery here:

No, I am not sleeping in the photo, I'm just thinking really hard. Hey at least I'm wearing a Gettysburg polo shirt!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

A new distraction

Sorry that I have been quiet as of late. I've just recently picked up a woodworking lathe that's been a new distraction and big sink of hobby time. I'm sure from time to time I'll be creating wargaming-related items on this, mostly terrain-related.

In the future I don't plan on blogging my woodworking projects, at least not on this blog. I may from time to time post a notice when I might be focusing more time on it such as now.

Below a quickly turned mallet for inserting drive centers into wood, a close up of the lathe head and speed control and a pile of shavings left after you turn a piece of firewood into a mallet.