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Saturday, 3 December 2022

25mm Warrior French Infantry

 For the past few weeks I have been paint converting some Warrior French infantry into Nassau and Brunswick troops.  yesterday I finished off some Warrior French as er....French, just for a change!

As always, these delightful figures are fun to paint and is is great to see these quite crude castings emerging as rather nice figures:

Thursday, 1 December 2022

Warrior Austrian Hussars

 These figures have been hanging around part painted for a couple of years and so today, I set about finishing them off.  Rather crude, but rather nice in their dashing uniforms.

Saturday, 26 November 2022

More Brunswickers

 Representing the 1st Line Battalion, some more Warrior Miniatures French, paint converted into Brunswickers.  I will probably paint one more and then will concentrate on some Dutch/Belgians.

Saturday, 19 November 2022

Warrior Miniatures Allies

 That venerable old school firm Warrior Miniatures caters well for the main protagonists of the napoleonic wars but there is limited coverage of the minor states.  There is a Brunswick element in the British section of the catalogue, but only for the Lieb Battalion with  the distinctive long coat and horse tail plume, but no line troops. Thanks to the work of Jeffers there are some Saxon troops available but that's about it.

I needed some of the minor nations troops for the 1815 campaign, so I set about paint converting some of my abundant French infantry casting.  Jeffers also upgraded these figures but as far as I know were never put into production.  John Holt the owner of Warrior Miniatures sadly has suspended the production of the Warrior range due to illness.  It is not know when or if production and sales will resume.

My idea is to paint a few battalions of German and Dutch troops to supplement my allied army.  So far two units have been completed.

A Nassau  line battalion:

And a Brunswick battalion:

I will add to these units occasionally.

Monday, 7 November 2022

Battle Report - Talavera 28 July 1809

Talavera is a battle that I have long wished to play, using the Command & Colors game system as the basis. I also wanted to play with both the British and Spanish elements on the field. After a bit of searching I found an enlarged version on the C&C website called 'Talevera La Grande Battle':

Will came over this weekend and so the troops were set up on the table.  From the French side:

And from the Anglo Spanish point of view:

The game was played using our in house rules, using dice to determine initiative and action points. Also, from previous games we added another tweak; units forced to retreat by a flag symbol finish up facing away from the enemy and are classed as disordered until rallied next turn and using up action points. This allowed cavalry to pursue and cut up retreating troops - as I was to learn shortly. We do not use the C&C game cards at all. 

I played the French and kicked off by having a probe towards the Spanish side of the field by attempting to attack the two gun batteries on the ridge.  These guns were behind an earthworks, proving to be a real challenge to dislodge:

The attack did not go well and the two French battalions were soon retreating having taken some casualties.  The action for this small ridge continued for much of the game sucking more troops from both sides:

Finally one of the batteries is overcome
On the opposite flank the British withdrew most of their infantry onto the reverse side of the ridge.  Seeing this the French now made a demonstration against some Spanish infantry in a fortified farm, with light infantry, supported by artillery moving against the buildings:

However, this small action grew into a major encounter as both sides poured more assets in. The Spanish were ejected by the French light infantry, who were in turn pushed out by a British battalion.  The French advanced a brigade of cavalry and British cavalry advanced to counter the move, A huge cavalry battle ensued.

The French were pushed back with the cavalry brigade being all but destroyed. French infantry were also beaten back and the allied left was stabilised.

Back over on the left the French continued to push forward against the largely Spanish forces, but once again were beaten back. It took several turns to rally the troops and sort things out:

Meanwhile, a pesky regiment of Spanish hussars continually harried the French, cutting up some French light infantry and eliminating a horse battery:

On the opposite flank the successful British cavalry over extended themselves, attempting to ride down a French battery, but the river and hill saw them decimated by musket and artillery fire.
With the British cavalry beaten off, the British infantry advanced forward off the ridge.
Hoping to take advantage of the disarray caused by the failed cavalry attack, two battalions of highlanders stormed across the river in a headlong charge:
Initially they were quite successful, but rallied French guns and infantry began to cause casualties, especially from short range artillery:
Although one French battalion routed, the highlanders were beaten back suffering severe damage.

back on the opposite flank the French reorganised for another push forward and although the second gun on the ridge was finally dislodged the Spanish, suffering high casualties held firm:

The Spanish pulled back and strongly held the village of Talavera and could not be dislodged:
Without making any real progress on the left, French attention shifted back to the right and centre.  Some fresh French battalions began to move against the allied centre which had been weakened by the loss of the highlanders:

Once again the allied cavalry intervened with a flank attack against a French battery that was causing problems by bombarding the fortified farm.  As before, this attack faltered and the cavalry failed:
Once more the French pushed on up towards the ridge, supported by cavalry and once again the remaining British infantry and cavalry counter attacked:

And the French were pushed back across the river, having lost more men and a regiment of cuirassiers:

Undeterred, hoping to win by sheer weight of numbers more French troops were pushed up the ridge

Eventually the French losses became too great and on both flanks they were unable to gain ground, being halted on the river time and again. The French exhaustion point of 15 was reached and an allied victory was declared.  The final score was 15 -13 to the allies.

A final view of the battlefield:

This was the largest battle Will and I had fought and it was a lot of fun.  The rule tweaks worked really well and allowed cavalry to be used to full effect. The battle lasted about four hours which was good for such a sizeable action. 

We are contemplating another large action in the coming weeks and will continue to put our rules adjustment ideas to the test.

Tuesday, 25 October 2022

Battle Report - Russia 1943

 Will and I played a quick tank battle, involving a few German and Soviet tanks.  I had six PzIVs and Will seven T-34s, two of which were armed with the longer 85mm gun.  We used my own 'Tank Action' rules which I have posted on this blog before.

The setting is a rural area with a river running across the centre and a key bridge (Bellona Bridge!).  there is also a ford.  Terrain consists of a small village, some low hills and a few small woods, seen here from the German end:

And the soviet end:

Both sides, out of effective range, moved into firing positions, with the Germans closing on the bridge and the soviets occupying the high ground near the village and the village itself:

Soon the tanks were close enough for some long range shots which were largely ineffective, but first blood came for the Soviets, which saw a PzIV brewing up from an 85mm round:

German revenge came quickly and a T-34/85 was destroyed:
The battle see sawed backwards and forwards as the Germans held a line along the river and the Soviets edged forwards.  The Soviets had more success, bringing two tanks up to the ford, knocking out another of the panzers:

However the germans were now in strong positions where they could engage the Soviet tank side armour. The Soviet success in crossing the ford was short lived as a 75mm round penetrated the armour of a T-34:

The soviet tanks continued to edge forwards and soon they had a tank on the bridge:

The battle raged around the bridge, with the soviet tanks moving around the flanks and engaging the Germans at close range.  Soon there were tanks burning across the field:
In the end the Soviets ran out of steam with just one operational tank remaining.  The germans had just two.  Whilst judged to be a German victory they were in no shape to carry on and would not be able to defend the bridge without reinforcement.

A fun game and another chance to play test my tank battle rules:

Monday, 24 October 2022

Battle Report - Bull Run

Over the weekend, Will came to visit with the intention of getting some soldiers on the table and playing a game or two.  As it happened, we managed three games.

The first was the battle of Bull Run 21 July 1861, based upon the Command and Colors scenario, which is focussed upon the action around Henry Hill house. The rules used were from 'Battle Cry, minus the cards:

The troops were set out in accordance with the map, essentially with the Confederates advancing behind the ridge under Jackson, with Stuart's cavalry on their left.  The Union forces in greater number were arrayed in a long line behind Henry Hill House. This is the table at the start up:

The battle began with my Union forces beginning to advance towards the ridge, while Will moved troops on to the ridge along with some artillery.  The Confederate opening volleys cut into the Union lines:

Now, Will is a Napoleonic buff and is unfamiliar with ACW tactics and firepower.  He seriously underestimated the weapon rages and effect of 1860s weapons.  His regiments on the ridge became very exposed and suffered appalling casualties.  His artillerymen were felled and worst of all, General Jackson is shot off his horse.  The Union sweeps the ridge clean of the Confederates.

Despite several counter attacks, the devastating fire from the Union reduce the grey lines even further.

Will tries to outflank the Union forces by using his cavalry that sweep around the Union right:

They are met by Union artillery fire and a counter attack bu Union horsemen.  Charging uphill the Confederate cavalry is checked, suffering severe casualties and forced back:

In the following turn the Confederate cavalry suffer more casualties and General Jeb Stuart falls.

It is over.  After the quickest game we have fought, having lost both Generals the rebels crumble and run for it. A decisive Union victory is recorded at 6-1, although several of the Union regiments are severely battered. However, the lessons have been learned and Will agrees to a rematch, swapping sides.