Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Blackpowder Napoleonics, What if Napoleon had waited just a bit....Prussian vs Russian 1816

        To celebrate the return of The Trunkmonkey from his extended sojourn in Japan (sightseeing, not work) we decided to throw on a Napoleonics game (he had been working on his Russians before he left and my Prussians had been gathering dust since December of 2021). The scenario is based on the idea that Napoleon had gotten better info on the back-stabbing and infighting at the Congress of Vienna and sat things out while negotiations were degenerating into the Conflict of Vienna. With Napoleon still cheating at whist on Elba the Powers fell into hostility and then armed conflict. Thus we find the Prussians and the Russians arguing over who got what slice of Poland.

       The battlefield was a sleepy town in the plains of northern Poland, which we see below.

the Russians, being the smaller force, were tasked with defending the town and the vital road junction
they deployed on the hills and in the town along the upper edge of the picture

Monday, May 13, 2024

Scratchbuilding 28mm Ottowa Longhouses, Part I

        As so often happens to me a request for some unusual terrain from a friend saved me from the "Curse Of Idle Hands". In this case the stimulus was provided by Zhodani Commando who asked if I could build some Native America Longhouses for use with his 28mm Ottawa figures. I took a moment to consider the basic structure (a long narrow building with a curved roof and either bluff or curved ends, barely more complex than a box) and agreed. As usual I forgot to consider the finer details, as we shall see further down the page.

notice the immense size of the longhouses and the pallisade around the village
a very nice illustration that I nicked from Researchgate 

Thursday, May 9, 2024

28mm Perrys, Dutchy of Warsaw Elite Companies 1807-1814

        Fresh from Perry Brothers studios comes Duchy of Warsaw Elite Companies 1807-14; the companion-piece to their Duchy of Warsaw Line Battalion 1807-14.  This set is everything that we have come to expect from the gifted hands of the Perry Brothers; natural poses, perfect proportions, exact details, a host of options and ease of assembly. 

       The figures are cast in a firm medium-gray plastic with no trace of flash and few mold-lines. The design and breakdown of the figures simplifies assembly and painting by making the backpack, coattails and hanger all one piece that can be painted separately from the figure and assembled onto the miniature afterwards. I have found that this saves no end of time and effort. The minis in this box will provide you with the Light Troops and Grenadier companies that often served in amalgamated battalions. This set provides all of the various types of headgear worn by the troops and comes with a color brochure the provides all the information that the gamer needs to paint their troops.

box front

Thursday, May 2, 2024

For Liberty and Freedom! OR Stamping out the terrorist enclave; a trip to Central Africa in the 1960s with R.U.P.

        Last weekend Rich Uncle Pat put on one of his trademark Cold War in Africa games. In this instance we played SPECTRE rules instead of the  usual modified B'Maso regime. Please excuse the gaps in the photo record as I was busy absorbing the new rules and often forgot to snap pictures. Further games in this genre by Rich Uncle Pat can be found here.

       These rules emphasize the limited amount of command energy that a force has, your CinC only has so much "processing power" and if he focuses his attention in one direction others areas will stall. The command energy is represented by Momentum Chits, these can be expended to cause units to take actions, a unit may be given any number of chits and can perform an unlimited number of actions (with progressively diminishing returns) until the supply of chits is expended. 

       The game is played in a modified I-Go You-Go system; the Attacker moves first by selecting a unit and having it perform its actions, the Defender may expend their momentum chits to react to Attacker moves. This continues until the Attacker runs out of momentum or chooses to stop. The Defender then may move and shoot his units in reply using his remaining momentum (if the Attacker has reserved some momentum he may interrupt the Defender's actions) This neatly handles overwatch and pass-through fire without any cumbersome rules. Shooting inflicts hits that are mostly reflected as Stress but may occasionally cause actual wounds or kills. In all it is a rather elegant system.

another of R.U.P's exquisite tables, 
the defenders mission was to avoid destruction, 
the attackers were searching for hidden supply depots