Saturday, February 26, 2022

Minden with Field of Battle 3 at Ulster Wargames Society

UWS meeting today and I was umpiring a game portraying Battle of Minden (using another Might and Reason scenario as basis). 

Troops were provided by Dave Smylie and I done terrain and rules stuff.

We ended up with 3 French and 2 Allied players and it turned out to be an excellent game with lots of incident and action and much elation or frustration being vented by players.

French have numbers but a lesser deck and lesser troop and commander quality overall, although they have several crack units and lots of cavalry to counter some guard level Allied units and more numerous artillery.

At set up Allies looked rather thin on ground but once things got going their superior deck and C in C quality started to show.

Billy on Allied left suffered a bit of a set back initially when a Hanoverian unit was destroyed defending a line of entrenchments and it looked as if Allied left could be turned, however whilst tying to Rally some units the French commander (ie D.Smylie) was rendered hors de combat after attempting a daring deed (aids Rally roll at increased risk to leader) and this stalled the French.

This same leader having been bandaged up and re-horsed proceeded to fall of his horse once again as did his supporting cavalry commander so the French completely thwarted on their right.

However Billy managed to 'un-horse' his own leader on this wing also !

Allied cavalry performed generally poorly on the Allied left with several units bouncing off their French counterparts and another command failing to move twice even when on flank of enemy.

However on French left their own massed cavalry (under D.Brown) also under-performed failing to obey orders and then being hit hard by Allied firepower whilst their foot fought manfully against some guard Allied foot (under D. Taylor).

On Allied right the British command under Sackville was slow to deploy as we simulated his 'truculence/hissy fit' on day by making him roll 2 command dice and use lowest roll.

In centre of field French (under J.Dowd) defended Minden and this saw a fairly even battle with Allies.

A couple of large initiative swings saw Allies gain a large advantage putting a lot of hurt of French units across the battlefield with several being routed or destroyed in place.

This saw French morale plummet and they were soon 'gifting' morale to Allies

They did survive first Army Morale test and this saw them hurl their cavalry into several desperate charges but only managed to destroy a single Allied gun battery.

A lull won French turned up another Army Morale card which they failed this time and quit the field.

Great stuff and hopefully the players enjoyed the game as much as I did watching it unfold.

Slightly fuzzy view of field of Minden from Allied left wing

Initial clash on Allied left

French defending Minden as their cavalry mass on their left

Allied lines advance

French just about to turn Allied left wing as commander falls (black marker) disordering whole command.

Overview about mid point of game with Allied cavalry having being repulsed in foreground

Also at club were two other games.

Mike and Simon had a 15mm WW2 game using Combat HQ rules, late war Germans versus Russians (?) but I only had time to briefly look in so no idea as to how this turned out.

I took several pics but only these turned out (barely) viewable,

I do covet Mikes battle mat and that Normandy church. 

Another WW2 game this time in 20mm run by Phil with Jeremy, Leslie and George playing out action at Son bridge during Market Garden.

This was another excellent looking game by Phil with some impressive allied Dakotas and Horsa Gliders and nice terrain.

Again I had little time to see how this progressed but think it ended as a draw. 

Inevitably with current events in Ukraine there was some discussions of same.

Personally I am not that surprised that it has come to this tragic outcome and the fact is that this is not really a 'new' war more a massive escalation of an ongoing conflict which seems such a shock to many. 

The 'West' appears weak/soft at present time and frankly Ukraine has kind of been left hanging since 2014 invasion so Mr Putin has decided to play his military card.

One can but hope that this is a short-lived conflagration but signs are not good.

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Command Decision: Test Of Battle game played

Game using Test Of Battle (ie Command Decision IV) today at Stephens, our first with these rules in donkeys ages.

Stephen set up Linard scenario from TOB book a US attack (in the end a full Infantry Regiment of 3 Battalions plus 2 Tank Companies) against SS defence (a single Battalion of PzGrenadiers with 1 Panzer Company).

Individually the Panzer Grenadiers are pretty potent with their 2 shots per stand, and being Veteran and dug-in helped against the flood of US units.

Took awhile to get our heads around how off-table artillery Battalions (2-3 batteries/stands) are used in relation to number of FOOs required but pretty much everything else was easy to pick up again.

TOB is more playable overall than CDII (never really played CDIII) with much less shooting and streamlined shooting ranges but retains the core of the CD system. 

The use of the Order Counters seems a tad fiddly and rather too flexible in some respects but a nice system of command and control if game not too big.

Fun game which we failed to finish mainly due to extended discussion of planned multi-player game and its possible subject matter, choice of rules etc (this of course was fun in itself for dyed in wool wafflers such as ourselves).

Only a couple of pics as got engrossed in game.

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Combat Commander a double solo outing

Played two scenarios of Combat Commander in solo mode today.

Both from original set ‘Hedgerow Hell’ and ‘Bonfire of the NKVD’.

Two very fun scenarios that even in solo mode ended up very close run affairs.

Such a great game.

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

No Retreat! The Russian Front- solo play

Got one of my many neglected board wargames to the table albeit in solo mode and a very enjoyable outing it was.

Such a clever game this allowing one to game the massive Eastern Front campaign in such a playable fashion whilst retaining a great feel of the epic scope of the struggle.

Even played solo (I didn't use the solo specific card deck) this is a fun game.

Germans failed to crush Soviets in 1941 and then saw the Russian juggernaut gather steam from late 1942 onward, I ended the game just as 1945 was about to start with Soviets already with a foothold in the Reich.

Thursday, February 10, 2022

L'Art De La Guerre - two games vs Sassanids

Two games of LADG today against Stephen who had a newly painted Sassanid army to try out.

So I selected my Maurikian Byzantines and Avars to give them an outing

First up was the Byzantines and this was a very close game which the 'Roman/Greeks' lost narrowly with just 4 difference in losses upon reaching their 19 loss level.

I did get decent terrain to help me in this one but the Elephant supported by Elite Dailami proved my undoing.

Second game was more the usual affair with my Avars suffering a horrendous turn of losses that they never recovered from and hitting their 21 loss level pretty quickly.

Terrain was far from kind in this one.

Two more enjoyable games with this excellent set of rules that easily allows two games in a days play a factor not to be sniffed at.

Byzantine clash

Avars take their turn

Friday, February 04, 2022

Art De La Guerre Renaissance rules again - French vs Late Catholic 1643

Another outing for AdlgR using a later version (1643+) of my Catholic army against Stephens French.

So gone are the Tercio foot and Caracolle cavalry with Pike & Shot and Pistols in their stead.

Also got to try Dragoons and Commanded Shot (a marker on a unit).

Dragoons had us head scratching a bit as noted as being mounted Light Infantry Skirmishers we treated them as a LI type but they perform more as a sort of Light Medium Mounted, with 3UD shooting range (compared to 2 for other Musket armed light foot), 3 Cohesion and are not auto killed in open if caught by heavier types, you only really learn by trying them out on table.

Another fun and interesting game that had nice period feel combined with the overall straight forward play of Adlg system.

The Catholics of course lost mainly due to their shooting being awful..............