Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Thirty Years War - PBEM via ACTs and Vassal

Started PBEM game using ACTS and Vassal against a chap called Przemek Bozek.
Ages since I played using these methods but great to get playing a board wargame I have not played for awhile.

Early days as we are just on turn one with Prezemek as Catholics and me as Protestants.
Tilly has massed his Bavarians and overrun freshly deployed Protestant forces in Baden
Mansfeld has marched north into Saxony and battle about to take place outside Leipzig.

Minden Rose - Russians versus Prussians

Game today trying Minden Rose rules again as I was looking to see them in action with a large number of units.

I fielded Russians with 3 Infantry and two (poor) Cavalry Brigades backed by 1 heavy and 1 medium battery of guns with two small Cossack units (24 units).
Stephens Prussians had 4 (smaller but with several better quality units) Infantry and 2 Cavalry Brigades (1 of very good quality units) backed also by 1 heavy and 1 medium gun batteries (22 units ?).

Pretty much a line them up and go at it game but we certainly give the rules a good airing.

I like the simple orders system as you chose between Attack or Hold (with Retreat being an enforced 'option') making it easy to implement.

Shooting, melee, movement and morale/command tests are also very straight forward and plausible but with a lot of dice rolling (a standard 4 Stand unit of Infantry firing first volley rolls 20 dice) but with the Hits Per Stand system it works fine.

Couple of aspects of rules lack full definition such as 2 vs 1 melees and we disliked the emergency square option for Foot (just not SYW).
But easily enough to change by dumping this option and cutting the +2 dice per stand for  Foot charged in Line by Mounted.
We also disallowed Foot to charge Mounted in any circumstance.

I had a Brigade of Foot behind temporary earthworks but again was not 100% clear just what this counted as when shot at etc.
We eventually agreed they are hard cover ie a difficult target for shooters which made them quite tough but we would force these to be deployed at outset so easier to avoid if desired.

Combat is pretty decisive in MR not so much through lost stands but the impact of of hits on Morale Tests which can see units Fall Back or Rout.
Also if a unit manages to charge or counter charge and can Rout its opponent this can be pretty lethal as Routers disorder any supports they interpenetrate who are then hit at halt (cannot react) whilst disordered by a quite likely still fresh pursuing unit which can then keep pushing back or routing units turn after turn.
Seemed a bit jarring initially but certainly decisive and in the scheme of the game it worked fine.
So a viable, playable quick play set with only a couple of minimal tweaks certainly as good in many ways as much more involved and certainly more expensive rule sets.
Actually bit surprised these did not garner more support as a rule set ?

The battlefield (Prussian would set up on nearest edge)

Russians arrayed

The Russian Brigade behind earthworks

Russian left wing

Prussians refusing their left

Cavalry 'scrum' on my left with my several poor Russian mounted already in Rout mode

Central Prussian advance

All quiet on my right although I have just changed Orders to attack on extreme right

Cavalry melee continues whilst my Infantry suffers a morale collapse (poor Command Test) after a unit Routs and goes onto Retreat orders (I did recover to Hold later)

My right begins to advance as Prussian mounted change to Attack also.

Russian unit forms column to move to support colleagues

Both my Cavalry Brigades now under real pressure

Monday, April 29, 2019

Barbarossa To Berlin game played

Game with of BTB last night with my Dad first we have played this in ages.
Enjoyable CDG this one with lots of flavour.
Dad took Germans (just for a change) and launched Barbarossa as initial strategy.
No real deep penetration of Soviet lines, more of a broad front, approach, but did cause a couple of large encirclement on the border of the Reich.
However he got engrossed in trying to reduce Leningrad which managed to survive several assaults by feeding in reserves.
However he was rather lucky and managed to take Moscow despite my defence with two Armies which lost me Stalin and 4VP.
However being rusty with the game we both forgot that by time Total War begins Hitler Takes Command must be played in order for Germans to avail of Totaler Krieg card.
As Germans were at a respectable 14 VPs which with the +20 from TK might well have thwarted Allies.
We ran out of time but Allies had whittled VPs back down to 10 by launching Op Torch and clearing North Africa and retaking Moscow as Soviet Tank units arrived enmass.
Had forgotten how good this game is with a bit more meat on its bones than Hitlers Reich.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Field Of Battle - American Revolution battle (with biggies)

Game using FOB2 today at Le Ducs
(his report at
using his 'biggies' (25mm) and a fictional AWI scenario pitting two British Infantry Brigades against three American Brigades (but with a fair dash of Militia units).

As ever with FOB an exciting game with plenty of action and initiative swings.
We were using a QRS Le Duc had found at another site but both failed to read it properly and so our Skirmishing units seemed rather powerful as we failed to adjust their firepower and the staying power of the smaller (3UI) units.

As British I decided to avoid as much as possible a straight march up the middle and tried to attack both flanks, which was just as well as the 'Super Skirmishers' managed to Rout in short order my Grenadiers and then my Hessians (both C12 D8 types !) although I did manage to restore the Hessian unit.

On my left I had some success taking a village area from a unit of Continentals and advancing into the midst of the American lines.
But despite being in a prime position to cause mayhem I failed to get necessary Move opportunities (failing to move on the single card I did turn) and was forced back but did retain the village.
On my left my advance was less successful being recoiled by fine shooting by the Colonials.

British morale was bled by the Skirmishers and my attacks and I went to zero Morale well before the Americans.
With my Commander only a D10 when the Army Morale Card appeared he of course lost his roll vs a D12 giving the field to the usurpers.

Another excellent game with FOB system and lots of discussion about trying FOB WW2 again.

British left advancing in Column supported by guns with Jager ahead

And deployment on right with support from 2nd gun battery

American Militia seek shelter on fence line with a nasty unit of rifle on some high ground to forefront

Continentals defend village

Overview of initial British moves

Volleys exchanged

British Grenadiers start their tale of woe and shame in middle as assault on village begins on left.

Slow progress on right

There go the Grenadiers back to blighty !

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Some Wargame food for thought.....

Copied this from BAR rules I have been reading today and thought it was bang on the money.
I would certainly put myself somewhere between Illumination and Contentment categories with odd leap into Discovery and Quest which kind of depends on period or game level.
EG am still probably in Quest mode when it comes to skirmish level WW2

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Field Of Glory Napoleonic - Peninsular action

Games at Stephens today using FOGN again (so easy to just bring a long an army).
1810/11 French against British in Spain was the match up with the fate of France in my hands once more (the fools !!)
Another very quick playing game (3 hours plus waffle saw this one to a conclusion) but a bit frustrating as once more I simply could not out roll Stephen anywhere of consequence.
I had a unit of Guard Chasseurs a Cheval (Superior Veteran Guard) which faced off against a unit of British Dragoons (Shock with an attached gun) so being Lighter types I had 5 dice to his 7 and he hit of a 3+ to my 4+, of course he scored 5 hits Wavering my lot and I managed a single hit without any re-rolls (2s and 3s only !!!) so was forced to perform an outcome which of course went 8" so facing away from Brits.
They being Impetuous followed although failing to maintain contact in the pursuit but whilst I managed to Recover from Wavering to Disordered I was subsequently hit in rear (back to Wavering) and broken in 2nd melee.
A Hussar unit on my left was shot to bits and I lost an Infantry unit to a 4 hits out of 4 roll by an Extended line leaving me with 3 Routed units which with 3 other Wavered units took me over 40% losses (vs only 10% British) and defeat once more
Think I may be better off just fielding lots of cheap Conscripts maybe a Spanish army !? :-)

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Great War Commander - in the trenches

Another couple of scenarios played with GWC, well three actually but I forgot to take pics of first encounter !

Late war stuff now with French attacking entrenched Germans, with their lumbering tanks in tow, heavy bombardments and lots of trenches, foxholes, barbed wire, shellholes and MG nests

Great stuff once more with this excellent game.