Tuesday, 21 August 2012

ECW Royalist Foot

Hello folks!

I have been beavering away at the lead mountain with the help of Army Painter and have added three new regiments of Royalist foot bringing the total to a more impressive five regiments:

 The additons are:
1. Lamplugh's Regiment of Newcastle's army
 2. Newcastle's Foot (using mainly scottish figures)
 3. Tillier's Foot
These look the business and the Army Painter might not give quite the same effect as multiple layersof highlighting but it is a) not at all bad and b) much quicker for ECW with all the fiddly bows, apostles, etc.

Next step will be the Royalist horse and dragoons before I think what to order for the Parliamentarians.

So long as a crack the rules conundrum I could see this project slowly growing. I can see a bath-tubbed Marston Moor taking shape...

Saturday, 11 August 2012

ECW progress and plans

My holiday is drawing to a close but in the last week I have been plugging away with the ECW lead mountain and thinking about where to go with the project.

The painting is going well and I aim to finish off the Perry stuff I bought as a royalist army, filling out the gaps with some small additional purchases. This should give me six units of foot, a unit of mounted and dismounted dragoons and six or seven units of horse - alaong with a gun and some generals. These will need some parliamentary opposition so I have bought a plastic set from Warlord. This is just the basic box of 40 infantry to see how they turn out. If I like them then Warlord do good deals on plastics, otherwise I can switch back to metals for the roundheads.

Rules wise I am bringing together ideas from "Victory Without Quarter" for the basics of combat, and some leadership point ideas adapted from Dux Bellorum, along with various other bits & pieces from other rules. However these turn out this gives me some idea of how to organise my armies to produce a gameable collection.

Infantry regiments are based on three 60mm squares, one of pike and command in the centre and two flanking bases of musketeers. These total 20-22 figures representing about 500 men. Horse squadrons have 6 figures based in pairs on three 50mm square bases (150 men or so). Dragoons can dismount two of their bases as a stand of skirmishers - four figures on a 120mm x 40mm base. Artillery are based with a 60mm frontage but I doubt this will be critical. Officers are based on 60mm rounds bases. No base removal will be required in the game, units will be removed as a whole when necessary.

Painting-wise I already had two foot units, a gun and a squadron of horse. To this I have now painted suffcient figures for a greencoated regiment (Tillier's, possibly) and a whitecoated regiment. I now have some scots figures to produce a second whitecoated regiment - these figures will be mixed with those of the first to give two units with a mix of hats, caps and bonnets to give a brigade of Newcastle's foot. I think the collection will end up as a bathtubbed version of Marston Moor, with the royalists haveing units from Rupert's and Newcastle's armies and the oppositin being a mix of parliamentarians and scots. This will also allow me to fight small battles based on the relief of Newark.

Thats all the musings for now. Once I have the remainign whitecoats finished I'll do some basing and photography.


Monday, 6 August 2012


Hello all. I'm half way through my holiday and have survived the seaside. Over the weekend I have finished off the dipping, varnishing and first stage of basing/rebasing for my numidians as part of the Caesar vs Pompey project. As with the Romans, the final stages of basing will have to wait for a suitable weekend free of distractions but in the meantime I thought I'd pop up some quick photos of the army as it stands.

1. Warriors. A sort of heavy skirmisher troop type rather than the more familiar light infantry or auxilia. These will take a bit of tweaking to get right under whichever rule system(s) I use. The Romans seems to have bee frustrated running after them in the desert.

2. Elephants. The photo is of my "African" elephant. The army also has an indian one. These are converted from Foundry models. The African elephant is from the Carthaginian range and the indian one from the colonial range. The howdahs are scratchbuilt from matchsticks and greenstuff, crewed by numidian javelinmen sans shields. The elephants and crews were painted about 10 years ago unlike the freshly finished warriors.

3. Light Horse. Well, it wouldn't be a numidian army without them, would it?

4. Imitation Legionnaries. To add a little backbomne to the army, or possibly to stand around looking stupid while the lighter troops make a run for it. These are unarmoured legionnary models from the Caesarian range given a suitably "numidian" paintjob. As with the elelphants these were painted a long time ago and have languished in the garage ever since, awaiting their day of glory.

5. The Army. In full battle array, including a line of skirmishing javelinmen thrown forward. There is plenty of stuff here to take on the Romans, or to provide allies for one side or the other in the Roman civil war.

6. The Prince. Maybe even Juba himself. More old paintjobs but I have repainted the shields over the weekend to match the warriors/skirmishers/light horse. The prince is a conversion featuring a numidian light horseman below the waist and a caesarian centurion above. His shiled is from the original Carthaginian version of the converted African elephant. The standard is from some plastic set from Games Workshop, possibly skeletons?

So there you have it. Apart from some flocking, static grass and general titivating I now have a fully functioning Numidian Army and have taken another chunk out of the lead pile.

In the last couple of months I have actually painted almost every Caesarian and Numidian figure that I bought when the range first came out. This really is all down to switching to Army Painter Quick Shade. The effect is very different from my usual layered painting but not necessarily worse and it certainly has helped to get the figures into a playable state.

As my overall plan at the moment is to reduce the size of the unpainted lead pile - as much to free up space as to save money - the next project is probably going to feature those lovely Perry ECW figures. The current thought is to do these all as royalists rather than bits of two armies, then add a Parlaimentarian army either with more Perry, or possibly Warlord plastics.

Partizan is just around the corner by the way, I'll be going with a shopping list to help fill out my various projects and will also be buying a load of new paints. I'll also be helping with the massive Y Gododdin game using Hail Caesar which will feature in the 300th issue of Wargames Illustrated. It should be difficult to miss this game!

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Progress report

No photos today but I thought I'd check in.

I have more or less finished painting the backlog of Caesarian Romans which I bought when first released by Foundry. I now have eight elements of armoured legionaries (four with red shields and four with blue), two units of unarmoured legionaries with blue shields and two with green. The latter can double up as imitation legionaries for the Numidian army of Juba I.

Now I have moved on to the pile of Foundry Numidians. I already have a couple of modified elephants and some light cavalry but now I am adding more light cavalry and a host of light infantry. As I'm planning on fighting battles using Hail Caesar, Impetus and/or modified Dux Bellorum I have been thinking about the basing of these. A few will be done as skirmishers: 4 figures on 120 x 40mm bases but most will probably be based as 8 figures on 120 x 60mm bases to represent a slightly more formed host of javelinmen. These will be a sort of "auxilia" or "heavy skirmisher". When using Dux Bellorum I think I'll treat these as analagous to Bow units but with a shorter range and moving at the same time as skirmishers to enable them to try the kind of feigned flight reported by the Romans.

As the Numidians should be fairly quick to complete and I thought I'd wait on expanding the Romans until Warlord bring out their plastics, I'm now thinking about what else in the lead mountain to work on. Current favourite is the ECW stuff I bought from the Perrys way back when. Now I'm getting the hang of Army Painter quickshade the lead mountain seems a little less daunting...

If not the ECW then I also have a massive pile of AWI figures and smaller piles of Greeks and Crusaders...and 15mm Phyrric and Romans...and 28mm Back of Beyond...and the 6mm Waterloo project...

Friday, 29 June 2012

Pompey the Great

It has been quiet in the shed of late. Not to fear, I am still painting away. The current project is Carsarian Romans. Here is a WIP shot of a command stand that I will use for the pompeian faction in the civil war. Basing still needs finishing but overall it has come out well. The painting is a mix of the Army Painter "dip" and some highlighting and GW washes. The shields are, as always, freehand.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Reorganising the man-cave

Busy day today rearranging and tidying the study. Everything is now more accessible including all my military history, wargaming and Doctor Who books, and I can actually see what I have on the painting desk! The desktop PC has gone as it was on its last legs and frankly was not much use. All I will add now is a speaker dock for my iPhone.

All about ready to paint some more Romans now.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Battle in the woods (4)

The battle drew to an obvious conclusion within few more turns. Victory awarded to the crown due to the losses suffered by the rebels. I staged a quick repeat and honours were more even. The British light battalion fought hard but were worn down by determined rebel skirmishing and limited cavalry charges. The arrival of the 23rd and von Bose prompted a rebel skedaddle to the river. Targeting turned up late and despite some aggressive charges by the 17thLD and Legion he was unable to cut off the retreat. Honours even with a slight edge to the rebels I think. If only tartlet on had arrived on time (3 failed order rolls) or the 23rd had advanced faster! They each got to the river only to see the last rebel rearguards making it over the bridges.

Might try a slightly less sylvan scenario next.

Battle in the woods (3)

The battle continues and has now reached turn 15. The crown forces have been reinforced by the von Bose regiment and have formed a line which is now pushing forward. The rebels have taken losses but a militia brigade has arrived to defend the river crossings. In the woods the rebel cavalry are attempting to hold back the fusiliers to give the militia time to prepare...

Rules notes for woods: max visibility 6". Targets not clear. No charge bonus for cavalry. +1 morale save. All movement at half-pace unless skirmishing. Cavalry can therefore charge and melee in woods but must be within 6" to launch a charge and hit on 4+ in most cases.

Still unsure whether chargers should get the morale bonus for woods on the turn in which they charge!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Battle in the woods (2)

Up to turn 5 now. The crown forces have been reinforced by Jagers and the 23rd Royal Welch Fusiliers, the rebels by more light companies hastening south of the river. On the eastern flank Tarleton has sent his cavalry to probe the militia by the mill.

Battle in the woods (1)

Hi all. Work has been busy but the long bank holiday weekend gives me a chance to catch up. Partizan was last week and was a great show as the many photos around the web show. On the Saturday before the show I put on an AWI game using Black Powder for Guy, Jasper and Christy from WSS as well as chum Phil Hendry of Avgvstvs to Avrelian fame. This used my small battle approach of units being 3 cavalry or 6 infantry figures and went well for an approximate refight of Hanging Rock.

Today I rearranged the terrain and armies, basing the scenario very loosely on the action at New Garden just prior to Guilford Courthouse. Iva added some pictures of the first turn with British light companies pushing into a line of rebel light cavalry in the woods.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Oh my!

These look great and are due out imminently from Victrix

I have already been looking at combining ideas from The Pefect Captain's Hoplomachia and either Dux Bellorum or Impetus.

With these and the potential for plastic Caesarian Romans from Warlord it might be time to get used to working with plastic figures.

Now, I do already have a decent number of Wargames Foundry Greeks and Athenian and Spartan armies in 15mm that I hardly ever use. What is it with Greeks?

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Coming soon...

Yes I am still here but have been painting some Irish/Pictish Celtic fringe figures for a few Dux Bellorum bases and it has been VERY slow going. Nearly there now, though!

Have also penned a couple of articles for WSS which should be published later in the year.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Dux Bellorum - article playtest

James came over yesterday with his family. In between cooing at the new baby we managed to fit in a game of Dux Bellorum in the garage. We used the opportunity to test a scenario I have written as part of a magazine article on the rules. The article will hopfully appear in Wargames, Soldiers and Strategy at the end of the summer to tie-in with the rules being released by Osprey Publishing.

Without giving too much away, the scenario involves a famous battle of the "Arthurian" age but did not specifically feature Arthur. A small, elite Romano-British army fought a larger Romano-British army with some Saxon allies.

I was very please with how the scenario played out and with a few minor tweaks I have been able to submit it to the magazine editor. The gae itself was great fun. I initially thought I had thrown it away, but managed to hang on and finally bring some rather unenthusiastic shieldwall infantry around James's flank. The final result was a narrow win but it was closer than I'd care to remember. Once James has a few more games under his belt I think the battles will be even more fun. The rules are simple enough but optimum use of leadership points is an art that needs to be developed with practice.

In the meantime I shall slowly plod on with some elements of Pictish/Irish "celtic fringe" and give more thought to the Caesarian Romans. Of the latter I still have plenty of metal to get through but the INTERESTING NEWS is that as Salute yesterday, Warlord Games presented 3-ups of some plastic Caesarians...what with these and some AWI plastics in the pipeline from Perry I might just have to expand some armies!


Saturday, 14 April 2012

Fun with photos

My wargaming time this week has been taken up with writing a couple of magazine articles, but as the sun was shining this morning I spend a couple of hours in the garden taking pictures of my Arthurians, Saxons and Late Romans as I had promised some shots to a friend to illustrate another magazine article.

I won't show any of the actual photos here until any have been selected for publication, but I have put a few choice ones through an arty filter on photoshop. I like this effect as it remeinds me of the sketch illustrations in history books at school way back in the "good old days".

Monday, 9 April 2012

I have been to Devon...

...so the blog has been quiet for a bit.

I'm back now though and have just been drafting an article on Dux Bellorum for WSS to be published later in the year.

Hope to get back to some painting after work tomorrow. First day back though, so let's see how it goes.


Thursday, 22 March 2012

Dux Bellorum game two - report

Following on from the photos, and before I forget too much, here is a brief report of the battle fought last night.

I took a Saxon army of a unit of warrior companions and a unit of noble warriors fighting alongside six units of ordinary warriors. The remaining points went on a unit of javelin armed skirmishes and a veteran upgrade for the unit of nobles. This left my warlord with just the regular 6 leadership points.

Laurence opted for a Romano-Brotish force with plenty of horsemen. His comitatus companions were mounted and flanked by two unit of noble riders. Further cavalry support came in the shape of two units of ordinary riders.
The foot component of the army consisted of three ordinary shield walls and two units of skirmishes; one with bows, the other with slings.

The battlefield was fairly open with a hill on the centre and a bog off to one side of this.

Laurence's plan was to push his infantry onto the hill while his noble and companion cavalry threatened my right and his ordinary riders rode around the bog to threaten my left and rear. In general this worked but he allowed his nobles to stand around for several turns while the rest of the army manoevered. This gave me time to push units into the bog and for my right flank to realign to face the noble cavalry with my own companions and three units of warriors. My veteran nobles and two units of warriors engaged the shield wall on the hill- a mighty task.

The battle swayed both ways. On my right I was able to catch some of Lau's ordinary riders in the flank with a unit of warriors erupting from the bog which slowed this flaking move. In the centre we fought each other to a standstill on the hill, each side outflanking the other. On my right the warriors traded blows with the British nobility. In the end the resilience of the Saxons was just enough and unit after unit of the enemy crumbled until the army's morale have way. In the end only the British warlord remained in the fight, still battling away with sword and spear.

I had only lost two units of warriors but this doesn't tell the whole tale as many of my surviving units were very much on their last legs and the result could easily have been reversed.


Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Dux Bellorum game two

Just a few shots of our game. Saxons versus Romano-British. The battle was very close but in the end the blonde warriors overcame the British defence. The rules seem really excellent and the game was great fun. Again a game with 120mm elements worked well on a 6x4 table with measurements in multiples of 4 inches.

Two weeks to the next club night so I'm planning to get some tribal pict/Irish elements done to use as allies.