Saturday, April 27, 2024

Ulster Wargames Society - General d'Armee 2 'mega' game !

UWS meeting today and I played GDA2 with Andy (who wanted to try the new version) using his huge 28mm collection of British and French.

Scenario based around an action in southern France in 1814 (Nivelle ?) with me as British and he using his French.

Andy put on a massive game with just the two of us playing (but with enough kit for easily 3-4 a side)

It was essentially a multi-Divisional/Corps battle (think I had in region of 6 Divisions with maybe 10-12 Brigades !) although not having read the Corps Level Rules we just used the Divisional system and 3 CinC Commands each and a bit of muddling through.

Indeed I kept half my forces off-table (no real room for them at start) and never deployed any to the table (3 Cavalry Brigades a British foot Division and a Division of Brunswickers).

French were nominally the defenders and also had huge force (again several Divisions and numerous Brigades).

Several units were surrogates (Brunswickers standing in for Spanish and some French Guard units making an appearance) 

Whilst this may all sound OTT it was in fact fine and we got a good workout with rules (and indeed physically running around the 12'x 6' table).

A very fun game was had even though the on table British ended up rather outnumbered.

French foot had little impact on game as unable to cross halfway (and never used any re-deploy) except when attacked by my lot.

But Andy launched what seemed an relentless number of cavalry charges which my cavalry managed to soundly defeat or my foot formed square to thwart them. 

By games end (ie when we ran out of time) he had one mounted Brigade completely Dispersed and three Faltering (another had used 'Stand With Me' to recover) whilst I had a Cavalry Brigade Faltered after a previously victorious unit succumbed due to reaching casualty limit.

I did launch an Infantry assault near one of his Redoubts but this failed to close to combat.

All in all we completed 6 turns which was quite impressive considering the numbers of Brigades and units we controlled but may have been different had we implemented the Corps Level rules or indeed had other players taken part.

Ton of pics (mine and Andys). Andy had printed out several sheets with all the OOB/Stats but I cannot recall the details/names of most units.

View from French center as Old Guard Cavalry arrive along road as reinforcements (as if needed !).

One of several cavalry engagements as House Hold (?) Cavalry and Carabiners (?) clash on French right, with Brits pushing back two Brigades before falling to a third

Similar scene on French left (The French mounted were completely mullered here) as I use 'Post of Honour' to enhance chances

Both sides have just Reformed ready for next encounter on French right

French center as British Guard Brigades approach alongside Hanovarians (these went into square as several Cuirassier appeared).

French redoubt on left later repelled British infantry assault.

Yup its horsie action again on French right just as the French light cavalry Brigade was forced to Retreat and Falter (it subsequently Dispersed after failing its Falter roll despite having a Brigade re-roll)

More French lights on their left are outclassed by Elite British cavalry

So much French cavalry..............yikes

Central French redoubt remained untouched throughout

British cavalry rushed forward with a Forwards order as Skirmishers and Artillery pin French foot

French Battalion defends stream

View from British left (yours truly photographing right flank action )

British cavalry (who saw off two French Brigades but lost out to third) advance along side infantry

View down French lines from their right

Elite British heavy cavalry whose impetuous 'Charge On' nearly got them in trouble, but thankfully my dice were good today (I know who would have thunk !?) got them out of the proverbial.

Early view from French left

And from British right

The Brit heavies certainly look impressive

French defend the town and stream

How my single cavalry Brigade managed to stymie this lot is the stuff of legend

Thankfully this further mass of French mounted had little room to deploy and was forced to replace Retreated Brigades.

British foot forming to conduct unsuccessful assault on foreground redoubt 

Hanoverian and British foot prepare to form square as more Cuirassier cross the stream

This foot Brigade took casualties from long range French artillery with central Battalion soon being charged by Cuirassier but they managed to pass test and formed Square to repel the French

British Foot brigades (including some Highlanders) on my left were slowed by several Hesitant results

My leading cavalry unit enters combat with Glory and Elan whilst mates meet a French charge. Thankfully I won both these combats flinging enemy and supports back

Eyeing the redoubt position with Brigade deployed in depth 

Skirmishers have just reformed at rear after being forced to flee from French mounted

28mm are certainly a sight to behold especially when seen in such numbers

Also at club were other games, with Phil doing a WW2 game, Dave P and Adam played a small WW2 Battlegroup game and the 'Two Daves' had another FOGR bash but I had no time to see any details or take any pics.

Thursday, April 25, 2024

Glory Is Fleeting - 1815 French versus British

Game with Stephen today sticking on our Napoleonic kick but using Glory Is Fleeting as change of pace from GDA.

Stephen selected 1815 British, with a Brunswick Division, so I accordingly used 1815 French Infantry Corps list (I had 12 units whilst Brits fielded 14).

The set up and strategy selection of this system is really genius generating plausible terrain and opposing plans, Stephen choose Flexible Defence from those I left him, and I went with Prepared Attack (not used before so wanted to try).

I made a mistake with terrain by moving a town into my deployment area which allowed Brits to utilise this as a strongpoint stuck into my set up area (I forgot these could be used when within 6" of halfway point) so a unit of Hanoverian Conscripts set up therein, with another similarly defending a second town area.

Built up areas are tough to take as you cant skirmish against them and units cannot forced out by firing (Wavering at worst) so they must be taken a bayonet point but not easy as defenders get to shoot (at all chargers) and then fight (against all still in contact).

I did send two units in against one town but both shot off by defenders so no combat.

My French had only two compulsory Light Cavalry units and these were opposed by two British Dragoons classed as Shock cavalry who easily rode them down (8 dice vs 5 in favour of Dragoons).

I did have two Veteran Divisions but the Brunswick Division include a unit of Hussars which forced some my units into Square (as being caught in Line is essentially a death sentence).

We failed to finish (too much waffle as always) but enjoyable game that was different to GDA but still felt Napoleonic at its higher level scale. 

Overall much easier to set up and play with points based armies which can be a definite  attraction at times (despite my preference for scenario style)

Poor pics again, I think I need new phone (or better specs)

View of French right with both occupied towns (Strongpoints) visible 

British Division in centre

French Light Cavalry in foreground where annihilated, and my Foot were repulsed from nearest town, two Veteran French Divisions in distance held their own against oppossing British and Brunswick Divisions. 


Thursday, April 18, 2024

General d'Armee 2 - Gilly scenario

GDA2 again at Stephens today and he picked the Gilly scenario (one of our favourites) from the Hundred Days supplement.

I of course therefore fielded the Prussians and he the French.

Proceedings delayed by chat about his visit to Salute but we still managed 6 turns.

Games certainly flowing well now but still coming across the odd obtuse wording in rules and couple of contradictions (albeit minor) between rules and QRS but otherwise fine.

Have said this after every game but Skirmishers are pretty potent in system as so many opportunities to shoot, often with extra dice (Skirmisher tasking) alongside being so flexible in movement and they seem to shoot better overall than volleying with Close Order troops (these mostly seem to only fire when charged) who they out range.

Suits the Divisional level game and certainly have effect (compared to many sets in which they seem under powered)

I did take several pics but only 1 seems to have saved to my phone !

View from Prussian lines at end of first turn


Monday, April 15, 2024

The British Way COIN - a two player outing

Played the Malaya game from The British Way with my Dad and great to see the game in 'proper' two player mode.

I played the extended version (9 cards per campaign rather than 7) and Dad took the British and I the MCP.

Great stuff and easy to teach and play (Dad not up to heavier games anymore) and in the end my MCP won by a mere 4 VP.

Friday, April 12, 2024

The British Way COIN - Malaya and Kenya solo

Couple of solo plays with the COIN games The British Way namely Malaya and Kenya.

So easy to get into these fun short 'gamettes' even in solo mode.

Malaya had a clear MCU victory over Britain on almost final card (I played the extended 27 card version) as able to sabotage the Economic Centres and Kuala Lumpur.

In Kenya Britain was able to easily put down (second Propaganda card) the Mau Mau insurgency by striking hard at their bases.


Thursday, April 11, 2024

No Retreat! The Russian Front - Pbem update

Pbem game of excellent No Retreat! Russian Front still ongoing with Mike and we are now well into 1942 (Turn 9 Sept/Oct) with my Germans I fear pretty much at their high water mark as Russians building strength and quality after a torrid set of winter turns for my lot.

Such a great playable game this

Turn 9 Soviet Combat phase with my having just placed three counter blows (a lot of strong red units now in Soviet arsenal !)

General d'Armee 2 - Dresden scenario

Another outing for GDA2 today with Stephen using the Dresden scenario from the 1813 supplement with me as attacking French (a chance to use my infrequently seen Young Guard) against defending Russo-Prussians.

Another interesting game with couple of new situations to delve into eg it seems Squares cannot support units (fair enough) but can be supported by other non-squares (at least we could find nothing disallowing this), I thought this was fine Stephen less so.

Only real 'problem' we had is the lack of definition of how to handle/model hills, its fine when these line a table edge as classed as slopes but a stand alone 'wargame style' hill is less clear as no mention of crests or reverse slopes or suchlike.

We simply house ruled that anything beyond middle of a hill from whichever angle viewed is out of sight which we liked better than being visible from anywhere to everywhere on a hill.

Highlight for my lot was a Infantry Assault against Prussian Brigade with Veteran Young Guard when I initially rolled double 3 but had 2 re-rolls and re-rolled one 3 as a 6 then re-rolled second 3 as another 6 !!! this forced a Prussian foot unit off the hill in retreat and a supporting artillery battery to withdraw, unformed and low on ammo.

The victorious lead unit then saw off a cavalry charge by forming square (with support from a unit in column).

However my other Young Guard Brigade fared much less well against a Garrison in central village as 2 charges bounced with the second seeing a reinforced melee by both sides which resulted in my 2 units forced to retreat and Faltering the Brigade and I had to use a 'Stand With Me' CinC Command to steady this Brigade but it was pretty much a spent force.

On our respective flanks we faced cavalry and our infantry were forced into square slowing their advances.

Think we only completed 5 turns (bit less than usual but with action from get go as defenders set up two thirds off way onto table).

Skirmishers were very potent and flexible as usual.

Village objective in centre were Young Guard Brigade was completely repulsed.

And the hill where other Young Guard Brigade achieved a stunning (ie lucky) success

A large plateau/flat top style hill in foreground (described as a rise in scenario) which we house ruled as having crest line (as seemed odd to be able to sit at rear and see and be seen)