17 December 2017

Battle of Beersheba (1917)

The centenary of the Battle of Beersheba occured in October, but for various reasons Mark wasn't able to run the game until the League meeting today. Andrew, Django, Ian and James took control of the ANZACs with Peter and I defended with the Turks.

Mark was interested in recreating the battle as this was the last real major charge by a British mounted force (and a legendary Australian success - refer to the 1987 film 'The Lighthorsemen' with Sigrid Thornton) and one truly deserving of being remembered and honoured.

We used Warhammer Historical's Great War with 28mm miniatures (from a range of manufacturers form Mark's extensive collection) with modifications to the rules to simulate the charge. The real battle was a race against time to secure the wells before Turks and Germans could blow them up.

The ANZACs had 3 units of light horse, 1 unit of (British) Yeomanry, 2 units of dismounted ANZACs and some artillery. The Turks had 6 units of infantry, 2 HMGs, artillery and a small unit of German engineers guarding the wells.

Here are some photos from the game, starting with an overall view of the table:

The view of the Turkish artillery towards the east:

Turkish peasants relaxed in their trenches:

Looking slightly less relaxed (I was reminded of that charging scene in 'Monty Python and the Holy Grail'):

The final charge after the Light Horse were able to break through to get to the German engineers and cut them down (bastards):

Typical of the British, they let others do the hard work and then came in at the end and tried to snatch some glory:

All in all another great game and a good end to gaming in 2017.

23 November 2017

Victorian ADLG Tournament 2017

The League of Ancients ran its annual ancients tournament over the weekend. It was the second year of using 'L'Art de la Guerre' (ADLG) third edition rules. This year armies were restricted to 15mm 200 point armies drawn from the Dark Ages, Feudal Ages and Late Middle Ages lists.

I took a Medieval German (227) army consisting of:

Army Corps I
C-in-C Frederick III, the Peaceful (Ordinary) (0)
x4 Heavy Knight impact (Ordinary) (52)
x2 Heavy cavalry firearm (Ordinary) (22)

Army Corps II
S/gen Louis, Duke of Savoy (Ordinary) (0)
x2 Heavy Knight impact (Ordinary) (26)
x2 Heavy cavalry impact (Ordinary) (20)
x4 Crossbow (Ordinary) (28)

Army Corps III
S/gen Tully Bascombe (Ordinary) (0)
x4 Pikemen (Ordinary) (44)
x2 Light infantry firearm (Ordinary) (8)

As you can see, a pretty ordinary army. Having only had four games previously under my belt, it was a good learning opportunity. What follows are pictures of mostly my army's backs (not such a bad thing - that's how I want to be seeing them during a game) and them being thrashed (I didn't win a game!). In all 21 people played over the weekend (some only on the Saturday or the Sunday), with a mix of armies.

The lists of armies were:
Feudal Spanish (148)
Beja (162)
Feudal German (183) x2
Later Crusader (187)
Teutonic Knights (209) x2
Later Samurai (210)
Medieval Scandinavian (221)
Feudal Scots (222)
Medieval Scots (222)
Hundred Years War English (225) x2
Medieval German (227) x2
Medieval Spanish (228)
Free Company (230)
Burgundians (231)
French Ordonnnance (234) x2
Burgundian Ordonnance (235)

In the morning on the Saturday I faced Alex I's Medieval Scandinavian (221) and lost 96 - 14 (he would go on to be the overall winner).

In the afternoon I faced Andrew W's Feudal German (183), losing 95 - 15.

On the Sunday morning I faced Andrew O's Hundred Years Wars English (225). Lots of Lb. And stakes. I was wearing him down (he had a few units with cohesion markers), but it was not quickly enough, losing 99 - 11.

In the afternoon I faced Peter C's Burgundians (231). This was another close game (the the final score doesn't truthfully reflect the closeness of the game. Honest! I lost 95 - 15.

Another well run tournament, things went pretty smoothly (three playing umpires were in use again and worked well). While I didn't get anywhere near the podium (okay, I was second last, but only because the player in last place only played two games). I did win the player's choice for best painted.

The guy on top is charming - I'll have to find out where he's from.

Edit: the drinking Saxon is from Wargames Foundry's SAX005 - Saxon Shield Wall Characters set:

All in all a fun weekend, doubling my number of games of ADLG I've now played, making me a lot more comfortable with the rules. More a definitely on the horizon.

07 November 2017

Cup Eve DBA Tournament

Every year the Monday Knights host a DBA tournament. It's a lot of fun and gives people an opportunity to paint and field ancient and medieval armies relatively easily. Version 2.2 was my introduction to the period 10+ years ago (where I had only played Games Workshop games and Flames of War up until then).

I love the game for its simplicity (but not the simplicity of the language the rules are written in!), and the ability to field interesting armies from history. The open book tournament used version 3 of the rules, including normal terrain set up. I decided to field IV/12e Maori as I painted them 3-4 years ago and never fielded them in a game.

The miniatures are from Battleline Miniatures in New Zealand. The sculpts are okay, needed a lot of cleaning up, but there's next to no choice out there, but I'm happy enough with them (as I'm slowly collecting Pacific armies or ones that adjoin it).

Anyway, onto the games. In the first game my 12 Blade army faced Ed with an army of Elephants (Burmese or Tamil I think). Was a nightmare. Lost 10-2.

Game two was against  Django and his Ptolemaic (II/20c) army with a little bit of everything. Struggled to take down the pike in difficult terrain, but managed to survive longer than I should have in the open against Knights, lost 9-3 (there's a pattern forming).

Game three saw me face  Steve and Italian Condotta (IV/61). I thought a littoral landing would be cool and I hadn't done one in years. Cool doesn't win you battle kids (particularly if your opponent does it better than you), lost 8-4 (I lost 5 elements, mostly to the Knights).

Fourth and finally game saw me face off against Gareth and New-Kingdom Egyptian (I/22a). At this stage I was regretting my poor choice of army in an open tournament; no mounted and no bad going troop types, lost 11-1 I think.

All in all was good to finally play version 3 after not playing DBA for a few years. I plan to play at Cancon in January next year - so time to paint and play with something with more flexibility. Tibetans maybe, or Malays. Not sure yet.

06 November 2017

Pop-up Globe Theatre's Henry V

"We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother"

― William Shakespeare, Henry V

The other day I went to watch the Pop-up Globe's production of Henry V, Shakespeare's tale of King Henry V taking on the French army at Agincourt in the face of impossible odds. I enjoyed this immersive theatrical experience complete with spectacular and blood-thirsty battle scenes, with men in full armour wielding broadswords, longbows, garottes, crossbows, bagpipes and... a frying pan.

Pop-up Globe is a full-scale temporary replica of the second Globe, the theatre Shakespeare and his company built and opened in 1614 after the first Globe theatre burned to the ground, and more information can be found here:

Below are some of the photos I took. If you can go, I recommend you do so.

22 October 2017

Knights of Dice's 1889 Mignola Avenue Part 2

Work continues on 1889 Mignola Avenue. I dry brushed the "concrete" parts tones of grey:

I probably should have painted the access covers, etc at this point, but I was too impatient and wanted to glue this beauty together. I'm gushing, aren't I?

Painted the door blue as a point of difference on the model:

I also glued a sheet of clear plastic followed by a sheet of slightly textured black card for the backing of the windows and door:

I will just need to be careful I don't dirty them as I finish the rest of the build.

Next step involved gluing the inside strips of brick, ensuring they were glued the right way up:

I also used clothes pegs to ensure I got a clean fit:

The roof got a light black wash to bring back some definition:

And I glued on the side panels, ensuring just a thin layer of PVA:

Slowly getting there, but probably can finish it off in two sessions; one for the washes, one for the tufts of foliage, etc.

(Mad) Maximillian 1934 Part 1

Yesterday I dropped into Eureka Miniatures and picked up (among other things) the Mad Maximillian Flyer car, running versions of the crew miniatures and the turning template for the Maximillian 1934 rules by Mana Press.

Even though (like most of us) I have other projects that need to be finished (planned games, tournaments, etc) I was keen to get started what I got:

The above photo shows all the parts you get with the Mad Maximillian Flyer (100MMX003), swapping out the driver for the female one, the female driver foot figure (100MMX009), the bareheaded male running with flimsies (100MMX010) along with the turning template for Maximillian 1934.

I also added the Double Armed Heroine, based Louise Brooks photo with the two pistols:

Not sure if she's available yet from Eureka, but she's a beautiful little figure. You can read about Ms Brooks here:

Late last night I managed to glue the car together and started painting the template. A little fiddly, but a lot of fun!

The only mod I need to do to the resin hull was file some groves on the left and right hand side directly behind the grille to allow the front axle plate fit:

The rear gunner arrangement was the most fiddly. I decided to glue everything together, as I could tell I'd need to fill gaps with Greenstuff. Particularly at the join between the support and the hull. I was impressed how well everything fitted together, it only took 30 minutes or so.

I then glued car (that'll be dubbed the Bull of Dudley Flats) onto a credit (well gift) card base and will now need to plaster the base along with those for the figures on foot:

The man holding the Lewis gun will need to have his have sculpted, and I'll probably add a few things on each of them to make them unique.

For those wanting to get their template done, instead of following Mana Press' video:

A quick alternative would be just to use a black felt tip pen. I decided to go ahead with another alternative and paint mine raw umber with a highlight instead, as I wanted to do something with chalk (as the Mignola Avenue building had turned out so well).

These parts still need a spray of matt varnish, which will dull down that dustiness they now have.

I also haven't full decided on the car's colour scheme, I'm currently thinking of dark grey or black and call it the Black Bull.