Saturday, October 28, 2023

Ulster Wargame Society - Combat HQ game

Monthly Society meeting today and I took part in a WW2 game using Combat HQ 2nd Edition rules.

Game was a multi-player (3 per side) affair set up and run by Mike (my Vassal opponent) with 3 German Bttns facing off against 1 British and 2 US circa 1944.

I took the British contingent on Allied right with Bryn and Jeremy D, the Huns were commanded by a revolving contingent of Simon, Dave P, Jeremy M, Dave S and even Mike occasionally.

Combat HQ is a set I am far from offay with (have 1st edition but never used) having only played the occasional game with Mike.

My Bttn had 3 Inf Coys with support from Mortar and HMG Platoons with 2 Cromwells, an M5 Stuart and a Staghound. 

Not a formal scenario as such although both sides had objectives to defend/assault (dont think any fell on either side ?)

By games end I had lost all my armour but Inf was intact and had disposed of a PzIVH Coy, a Sd222 Plt and a Coy worth of PzGr. 

Not sure what the losses were to Yank colleagues or other Hun Bttns but think honours were similarly even.

It was a fun and slick playing game once you pick up the basics of the Dice Initiative/Command system and the fairly straight forward combat systems.

View from my flank along Allied lines

My nominal objective defended by PzGr (green markers indicate Unspotted status)

Later my Cromwells have pushed forward and engaged enemy with Staghound and Stuart in support, my foot lagging behind

Stug Coy advancing on Hun right

With PzIVs pushing along road on same flank

Brit Infantry Coy trying to get forward to support armour

Also at club were two modern games (was bit of a tank fest day).

Paddy and Phil (plus ?) had a 20mm game with Swedes (with S Tanks) against Warsaw Pac force no idea what rules.

Andy and co played another practice Team Yankee game.

The two Daves had a FOGR game with French vs Swedes circa 1690.

Friday, October 27, 2023

Field Of Battle 3 - Dresden 1813 scenario played

Another game with FOB3 a Napoleonic bash this time using a converted GDA scenario covering action during Battle of Dresden on 27th August 1813.

Stephen was the attacking French (lots of Young Guard) and I the Russo-Prussian defenders.

Issue was decided on central hill when Young Guard simply ran over the Russian Brigade defending and split Allied army asunder.

'Dice Demon' just seems to get the rolls and cards he needs at optimum times with even his lowly Skirmish screens inflicting pain on my troops, so many rolls of 8 (I swear he rolled 8 on a d6 !!).

My rolls only seem to come good when Army Morale has zeroed !

We had a couple of early deck reshuffles (tied initiative rolls) which is unusual and I struggled to pull Move cards (a mere 3 all game) .

Another quick and cracking game with FOB, seldom a problem completing a game.

The core of action around hill 

Russian lines. The Light Cavalry reserve to rear did manage to swing to its right to support hill position.

Russian Infantry Brigade on hill under severe pressure (the whole 5 unit Brigade was annihilated) despite support from Light Cavalry 

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Shako - Seven Years War variant - Prague scenario

Game at Stephens and he selected another SYW bash to give a Shako variant another outing.

Scenario was an adaption of a Volley & Bayonet scenario covering Prague again (this a much bigger affair than our last game) with unit count cut by one third and using the small table (6' x 4') option.

I was Prussians attacking the Austrians and boy oh boy one really wonders what Frederick was thinking !! so many impassable ponds and lots of marshy streams with Austrians commanding the high ground and utilising field works. Even with classing the bulk of Prussian foot as Elite it is a tall order.

The slightly truncated table made deployment a real bind with simply no room for Prussian mounted (if trying again we would use a 7' x 5' table) and with so much difficult terrain it was a nightmare just trying to move forwards. 

Scenario issues aside (tis the nature of the beast) the Shako amendments worked pretty well although fiddly maneuvering/wheeling of units and potent Artillery are inherent 'problems', not helped here by terrain which compressed units into killing grounds (one Artillery shot had bounce through onto 5 units). I prefer Shako for Napoleonic games.

Only a single pic as others I took very blurry for reasons unknown

Prussian right wing with cavalry unable to deploy and some tough entrenchments with marshes, ponds and streams (similar in center).

One of the blurries but showing bit more of the table and more terrible terrain

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

Fire In The Lake - solo short scenario played

Played through the short scenario (not tried this one before) of FITL and yet again another fine solo experience.

NVA sort of snuck a win at end by taking Hue city giving them a 1 VP lead which could not be overcome before last Propaganda card.

Close overall with ARVN ending on -9, VC on -8, USA on -5, and NVA on -4.

I do so enjoy this game and COIN system in general

Thursday, October 12, 2023

A double dunter - Field Of Battle 3, Prague scenario and Stalingrad Advance To The Volga

Stephen at chez Steiner today (we missed last week as he was poorly after Flu/C19 jab) and we played a SYW game with FOB3 using a Black Powder based scenario I adapted for action at Prague 1757, with he using his Austrians against my Prussians (Browne's counterattack vs Von Schwerin).

This was a mighty quick game (think only lasted just over 2 hours !) as yet again Stephens dice were awesome in Shooting and Combat from get go and my casualty rate was truly awful (only my Rally rolls were decent)

I charged with my superior cavalry into his but won only one of five combats and he managed so many even rolls to not become Disordered and my cavalry wing just never recovered.

I later had a Cuirassier unit rolling a D12 +2 against an enemy Cuirassier on a D8 (previous hits) and still managed to be forced back with a hit which was par for course for all my mounted units bar one which routed an enemy Dragoon before being pummeled by two other units.

On Infantry flank my Grenadiers shot very poorly and Austrians inflicted losses including a single 12 to 1 Artillery shot that destroyed a Musketeer unit in place (it already had a hit)

It was so bad that I had instantly, or so it certainly seemed, hemorrhaged all my Morale (25 chips) and was gifting to Austrians who had lost a mere 7 at this point. 

Really should have called it but decided to fight on and indeed survived two Army Morale rolls in quick succession.

Curiously at this stage the Prussians woke up and began to roll some decent dice but just too damn late. 

I managed to inflict several losses (think Austrians ended up down 18 from their 35) but just no way back so offered terms and yielded the field.

Frantic and deadly fun this one ! 

I do so enjoy FOB but by golly it does seem to hate me at times :-)

Prussians arrayed before arrival of enemy (their finest hour)

Cuirassier and Dragoons formed left flank

Grenadiers in the centre

And a large Brigade of Musketeers on right wing

Front rank of Grenadiers who under performed all day

And vaunted Cuirassier (best cavalry on table) who were also pants

Large Austrian left wing Infantry advances

As the mounted debacle unfolds (I have 2 units Routing at this point)

Grenadiers taking losses whilst inflicting none (the story of their day)

With the FOB game fairly flying by I decided to let Stephen try out the Solo 'Stalingrad Advance To The Volga' with me making dice rolls for Russians.

Played through 4 turns and he really enjoyed the game seeing the depth of decisions combined with simple rules that make it so attractive a package.