Friday, January 30, 2015

Challenge Entry: Long Toms and a few Flames of War odds and ends.

One of the things you have to get used to as a historically minded player of flames of war is the presence of artillery on the table.  This is especially true of big guns like the 155mm "Long Tom." Lets be honest in most cases if your Corps artillery is taking direct aim at a Tiger Tank... you as a commander have screwed up big time.

That said they look really cool... and the Long Tom can handle most German tanks if it gets a chance to fire at them.  I picked these up recently with some Christmas money and they have already had their battle field debut (the less said about it the better but you can look on my blog, I record my defeats as well as my victories)

While I was very happy with the guns themselves I was less than thrilled with some of the support staff.  I modified the fellow with the clip board so his arm hangs down rather then pointing because multiple pointing figures on the same stand look silly.

The observer with the binocular was fine but his partner looked like he was giving hand signals and that is not how you get artillery on target.  So I swapped him with another figure with a radio from by dead lead box.

 The staff team looks great and I am pleased with how my little hand painted map came out.

 One man pointing at the map while the other is pointing off in the distance is OK.

 Rear shots of the command and observer stands
 Rear shots of the guns them selves. I really wish they had modeled one of these with an open breach it would have looked much better with all the men trying to load powder and shells.

If I pick up more of these I may try to do that on my own... though it would be a pretty risky protect.

 The last of those plastic Battle Front figures i had gotten with the Ranger program

Mortar team of Airborne troopers.

 The 60mm mortar is one of those often over looked but very effective weapons of war. These may see service with my Cavalry Recon platoon.

 An extra command stand that why let the figures and the base go to waist.

 All together I have two 15mm Artillery pieces for 8 points 5 crew per base for 20 points (if they count for the full 2 points each), then another 9 figures on for the staff team, observer and command stands for another 18 points. the Mortar stand is another 6 points (3 figures but I am not counting that little mortar as a crew served weapon, adjust if you think it warranted Curt) and another 6 points for the extra command stand.

Cuthwulf is driven from the field of Bowes

 So this was me early in the week and I feared digging out from the Blizzard of 2015 might interfere with the game planed for Thursday.  As it was a parking ban was still technically in effect when John and I arrived at the Hobby Bunker but was being ignored (it would officially lift in a couple of hours). It should also be noted that during the snow storm the Blog passed 100,000 visitors.
 This was our first battle with the full pre-battle process I opted give a speak and between my Glynn' musical accompaniment and Cuthwulf's Royal blood we go a six giving me an extra level of status an extra fate card for the game.
 John Chose to challenge my champion and so Uthred and Wulfric met to do battle before both armies.  It was a savage fight that Wulfric (my champion lost)  lost. Had Mead and Ale passed around my troops but with no determinable effect and then John with his moral at maximum (10, while mine was 7) started the battle.
 Once again I entered at the top right corner of the board... the hedge slowed my maneuvering some
 John started int he bottom center and advanced forward.
 His Elites formed at the edge of the woods.
 Cuthwulf with his elite troops (my own troops) and a band of warriors move to form up behind the cover of the hill.
 Seeing John's Elites isolated I try to attack them but the dice are not kind I lose two men and inflict almost no damage... after a few turns of combat I withdraw happy to get these men out. As would happen several times in this battle I got a decent number of hits but my rolls for inflicting shock and kills came up short.

 John had formed shield wall but with his elites engaged I though I might still have an opportunity but with the stand forth card John brought up support to counter the troops I had over lapping the left of the shield wall.
 I did very poorly in the exchange my poor rolls for kills and shock made word by the effects the shield wall.
 Two of my units lost their amphora and despite the fighting prowess of Cuthwulf and Wulfric together the third soon broke as well.
John was able attack and brake this unit (and my army) as I attempted to withdraw.  I did get one unit off the filed before this happened but two more of my warriors were killed by peasants on their way home, all and all I suffered 25 Casualties while inflicting only 7.  John won a 7 point victory and technically won the campaign as I would not recover my casualties until after the campaign season was over and my purse is empty.

Truly a victory the bards will sing of through the ages.

To keep the campaign going John is letting me ransoming back Cadfael so that I can pay taxes to my king and continue into the next season. John picked up a unit of Skirmishers and will have an extra Noble. Campaign update will be available on John's blog soon.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Thor God of Thunder

My Entry for the Myth Bonus round please take an look and vote if  you like him.  I would love some feed back too here or on the website.

I got this Thor figure form Reaper miniatures for use a the head of my Gods and Mortals army. I actually intend to call him Thunir in the game Thor type deity form Guy Gavrial Kay's Last Light of the Sun Novel but its pretty clear from the book that Thor and Thunir are the same hammer wielding god of weather, thunder etc.

I wanted to try and capture the idea of Thor/Thunir as force of nature feared as much as worshiped and this striding figure with it powerful build, streaming hair and billowing cloak fit the bill.
For the cloak I wanted to try and suggest that it was made not of cloth but storm clouds. I looked a pictures and tried to shade not on how light would fall on the cloak but how if would fall through it the way it does a cloud.
I also used a bit of silver to suggest the crackling energy of the lightning that is ready to burst from the cloud. That's what I was trying to but I am not sure I pulled it off.
The vambrace has some nice details that came out well there are lots of little details like this on the figure but it was hard to get good pictures of most of them I am sorry to say.
The figures is 28mm scale but as fits a god is significantly larger than the 28mm dark age warriors he will lead into battle.

Monday, January 26, 2015

US 1st Division can't break the FJs

Ben and I met again with Midwar armies as he prepares for the tournament at Temple con. We got the surround mission and you can see his position here.  His Falschrmjagers are well dug in and he used his Engineer truck to place barbwire to mess me up. I placed one of my two infantry Companies on one side of the field with my artillery(one battery of 4 105s and one battery of 2 155s, armor and a mortar platoon) the other side of the field I placed my I&R platoon and my other infantry platoon.
Using cover my boys Truscot Trott up to the edge of the woods.
My armor opens up on the entrenched Germans but gets no hits... ranging in fails.  My sniper takes out a German Artillery piece ( my sniper was the one guy who constantly did is job right this game)
Ben bombards with no results...
But his StuGs got 5 MG hits on my far side infantry platoon pining it (and it would not unpin for the duration)
My I and R platoon dig in in the woods just to the rear of the Germans and begin taking MG shots at opportune moments and annoying Ben by lifting gone to ground
One tank bailed by German StuGs, my return fire bails two StuGs and destroys the third Ben passes his motivation at the end of shooting.
Artillery does better no kills but two units pinned down...
With infantry pinned and tanks bailed this is my best chance I charge in kill two stands but Ben counter attacks and bails on tank and destroys another!
The infantry follow up is pinned down... for several more turns I try to kill a few FJs any way I can but only my sniper has any success... the far side platoon doesn't unpin and some how Ben kills two of my I&R men (despite being dug in!) my dice are cold... Ben on the other hand has good dice always rolling exactly what he needs...
My final charge Ben with only 7 dice and needing 4 gets exactly the 5 hits he needs... at this stage the game would have timed out in a tournament. if I had infinite time I might have managed get Ben now that both Artillery batteries were ranged in on the target but Ben wouldn't have sat still that long... and with my far Side platoon still pinned and at lest 2 moves from any thing important he had them men to take on my one platoon of infantry (which was down by about a third of its rifle men).  Ben didn't make any mistakes and made all the important rolls were as my dice didn't make any important rolls and even failed on quite a few unimportant ones. It was a frustrating game for but sometimes that is what happens.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Teaching game of Flames of War

As several members of the New Hampshire War Gaming Alliance are interested getting into Flames of War I ran a 1000 point game with the 2nd Panzers on one side and the 99th Infantry on the other.  Austin and Dave wanted to work together Austin has a lot of Flames experience but most of it is from way back in Version 1! Dave is a new player.  They took the Germans so I took the 99th We rolled a mission and got Encounter. Sorry I don't have my usual number of pictures as I was distracted by talking through the rules or explaining game mechanics. 
Both side advance cautiously the German half tracks got a bunch of lucky shots on the US infantry platoon bringing it to a halt. The German infantry took some hits in turn form the US Cavalry recon troops. Then I got my armor and anther infantry platoon and make and advance on the left.
The Germans go their own armor just in time to counter my advance.
Shooting was about even on both side though I did get several kills on the Infantry platoon in the woods. German 2cm and MG fire took a heavy toll on my troops as well.
I launched an assault that killed two Germans but lost a tank in return and then failed my motivation to keep the fight going. Normally I would not have launched such an assault but I did it so we could practice an assault.  At this point the game ended in a draw though the Germans had killed one platoon to my none giving them a slight edge.  Every one had fun Dave wants to try running US infantry next time(though he wants 1st ID) so we will probably try something along those lines in a couple of weeks.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

28mm Napoleonic French Infantry

After doing the Guard D'Argent earlier I decided I would finish up the French I got form John.  I believe  these are all Perry figures. While very nice figures they have reminded me why I don't like 28mm scale for full size units in the Napoleonic period.  Its just too much fiddly detail no one will see on the table but every one will pick up on in the grab a model.  Love this scale for skirmish games and Dark Ages but I find it frustrating to paint for this period. Any way I won't be stumbling on them each time I go into the dead lead box so that feels good.

So I present to you what I intend to be the final two units of Napoleonic French I plan on doing in this scale. Note I had no Porte Drapeua figures so I had to modify two musketeers to carry the Eagles and colors.

I must confess I cheated a bit using army painters Ultramarine Blue primmer to prep the figures.
Thanks to this I only had to deal with picking out the details and the part of the uniform that are not dark blue
I varied the trouser colors, brown, gray (I was going for untreated linen) and off-white

 I also had two men firing who will join small cloud of skirmish troops.

All in all I have one unit with 15 figures, one unit with 14 figures and 2 skirmishers.  Since I was using up what was left I wound up with some odd numbers in the unit but all and all that is 31 figures all 28mm.  

Theses will make nice addition to the French force for Waterloo at Huzzah.