Saturday 31 January 2015

Indian Mutiny Encounter Battle.

I've played another Indian Mutiny game using 'Black Powder' and this time I've managed to record most of the action . The British column moves down the road flanked by a cavalry Brigade .

My newly based loyal Sikh cavalry.

The British CinC General Crawley ('Creepy 'to his men !) espies the approaching enemy .

Colonel Mac Duff cheers his men on !.

The enemy appear - I dice for when and were the Mutineers came onto the table. Staff ratings were also allocated randomly. This Indian commander is only 6 - rather poor . The problem that the mutineers had during the rebellion was the lack of overall leadership.

The Indian cavalry with accompanying Camel Guns - it always seem to me a rather foolish thing to put a gun on a camels back - the seem unstable at the best of times !.

The table on the first move, British left hand side, Indians top right.

Hodge joins me for the first few moves then is ejected from the room for chewing trees !.

The British infantry deploy, the blue marker is for 'First Fire' and the water 'bisthi ' to mark that the unit is 'Steady' - it automatically passes it's first moral check.

The Indian cavalry attack the British right - rather successfully as well ! - overrunning the Horse Artillery section and driving the British cavalry back.

The crisis on the right ! , the CinC rallies the retreating Light Dragoons as the Sikh's manage to halt the victorious Indian Lancers.

More Indian forces appear , unfortunately having moved onto the table they did nothing to assist the cause and simply stood there unwilling to move.

The Mutineer cavalry charge the British Artillery but in the nick of time the Light Dragoons arrive and drive them off , the Sikhs pursue and destroy the Indian lancers . The Indian Cavalry Brigade had to take a moral test which it failed and fled the field ! . This took the pressure off the British and their artillery was able to deploy and start shelling the remaining Indian forces.

The end game - the Mutineer force in the top right had not advanced and when trying to do so it's commander rolled a '12' which means a 'Blunder' has occurred and it retired off the table ! . This signified an end for the Mutineers with over half their force missing or casualties-they were beaten ! , but it had been a close run thing with their cavalry almost overrunning the British right . I'm still fiddling with the the 'stats' for the troop types , but 'Black Powder' allows you to tailor your armies to hopefully simulate their historical counterparts.  

Tuesday 27 January 2015

Fruits Of My Labours .

I've been battling on with my re-basing of my Indian Mutiny figures and have got enough done for a game . Here we see a British attack on a Mutineer held village .

Mutinous Sepoys and guns man a wall .

The attacking British force - Artillery battery nearest the camera then loyal Madras Sepoys , Highlanders and Royal Horse Artillery . The alongside the officers are a home made markers to signify their Staff Rating .

The British C in C's command base - unnamed as yet - I hope he is aware that the regiment behind him looks like it is about to open fire !.

The Indian Commander watches as a regiment of Sepoys moves up into position . There is always the temptation (which I have resisted up till now) to dip into the local Indian restaurant take away menu for names of Indian generals and villages ie the village of Rogan Josh etc . Unfortunately my camera battery ran out of power so I was unable to record the actual battle , which was a narrow win for the British. Getting these figures onto the table has spurred me on to get the rest of the collection re-based .

Monday 26 January 2015

Similar - But Different !.

This weekend I went to visit the local Model Railway Club's show , I've always been interested in railways (my father worked for B.R. for 30 years or so ) and even had a train set as a child . The two hobbies of Wargaming and Model Railways have much in common with the modelling aspect of things and everybody likes toy trains !.

But they differ in the complexity of scenic terrain , because model railway layouts are mostly static the level of scenery can be greater , very taken by how the foreground merges with the background in this set up .

The detail of the landscape is amazing - the amount of work that has gone into the layouts !.

Love that tunnel .

There were clubs from all over the North of England with their layouts and there were a selection of traders sell Model Railway products .

Many of the set ups were based on actual stations and landscapes .

The amount of detail is awe inspiring .

Just waiting to get some toy soldiers onto the table .

Of course the difference is that wargaming scenery has to be removed and put into boxes ready for the next game and most of the scenic items for Model Railways is to delicate for this . I came away impressed by the level of modelling and devotion to the hobby and it has made me think that I should take a bit more effort in my scenery next time I play a game.

Monday 19 January 2015

I Must Be Mad !

My order from Irregular Miniatures arrived promptly this morning (excellent mail order service !) , it contained figures for my 3 battalions of Papal Line Infantry . The only problem is that the Papal Line units had fringed epaulettes on their great coats and Irregulars figure doesn't have them ! - soooo  I've got to add them using 'Green Stuff', that's at total of 120 epaulettes for the 3 battalions ! Hmmm !

Well I've got the first unit done and will get them sprayed up tomorrow - weather permitting . The Line infantry have quite a natty uniform - an iron-grey greatcoat , red trousers and different coloured epaulettes for the grenadiers, voltigeurs and fusiliers so should look good when finished .

Saturday 17 January 2015

Papal Army 1860 - Foreign Regiments.

I'm taking a break from my re-basing of the Indian Mutiny collection and have painted up a couple of 'Foreign' regiments for my 1860 Italian War of Independence project . The first is a battalion of the Austrian Bersaglieri/Jager regt. 

The next is a battalion of the Swiss Carbineers . The Papal Army was made up from 'Native' (Italian) and 'Foreign' (recruited from Austria , Switzerland, and various other Catholic countries ) regiments . Having got these exotic units done I've sent off an order to Irregular Miniatures for 3 battalions of Line Infantry to round off the army. 

I've also painted up a Papal  gun and crew , the colour of the gun carriage is conjectural as I've found no clue to the actual colour scheme.

Sunday 11 January 2015

Production Line Re-Basing.

I decided to use 'Polyfilla' to cover the bases as this would be cheaper than 'Bastex' , so I've been applying a layer of it to bases carefully around the figures feet and then letting it dry overnight. I then watered down some suitably sand coloured paint and painted it onto the filler. 

When it's dry I then apply some PVA glue in patches and sprinkle with static grass .

The watered down paint pooled in the recesses of the filler and so I've not needed to highlight the bases . This is NOT my favourite task but it's getting done and I will feel virtuous at the end of it !. 

Friday 9 January 2015

First Fruits of Re-Basing.

Well I've got the first two units re based of my Indian Mutiny collection. A large order of bases has arrived from 'Warbases' so I can crack on getting them done . Decided on 40mm square bases each with 3 or 4 figures to them and 5 bases to the 'standard' unit in 'Black Powder' , cavalry will be 2 to a base and 3 bases to make them 'small' units . Above are the 42nd Foot 'Royal Highland Regt.'

These are my first unit of mutineers the 10th Bengal Native Regt. These are in full dress as they appeared earlier on in the revolt , later they adopted the white undress uniform and stopped carrying their colours .  I decided to use 'Polyfilla' to cover the bases and then paint it a sand colour and add flock as this will work out cheaper than 'Bastex' . The figures are 28mm Foundry from their Indian Mutiny and Sikh Wars ranges. I've decided to glue them all onto bases first so I can start playing with them which will encourage me to continue with this mammoth task .

Wednesday 7 January 2015

The Curse of Re-Basing.

There is one subject that will make the average gamer blanch and reach for a stiff drink and that's the subject of re-basing figures , I hate doing it ! - but it can rejuvenate a collection of figures and get them used again . My wargaming friend 'A' loves it ! he has re-based  collections of 100's of figures and swears bye it .(whole forests have been felled to feed his need for MDF bases). Many years ago when Foundry sold their figures singularly and I visited many wargaming shows (helping 'S' with his S&A Scenics stand) I bought a few Indian Mutiny figures off  Dave Thomas each time I saw him (when he carried them at shows) and slowly built up a large collection of them .

I also bought cheaply the odd unit of painted figures off the Bring and Buy . The collection had no uniformed size of basing apart from all being based singularly . This reflected the various rules I had been using , the were housed in a collection of tool boxes which ended up in the darkest recesses under my gaming table .  Because they were not readily available they didn't get used and only resurfaced recently when I was de-cluttering . I transferred them to box files and considered what to do with them .

I've always been interested in the Indian Mutiny and rather than sell them off I decided that I would use them with the 'Black Powder' rule set which I've been using with my 'Garibaldi' project. However this meant the dreaded re-basing ! , my New Years resolution was to use my existing figure collections rather than start new ones - soooo the bases have been ordered and when they arrive the work of basing will start .  Watch this space ............

Friday 2 January 2015

The First Game of 2015 .

I've decided to continue my re fighting of 'classic' wargame battles , this one being 'The Battle of Sawmill Village ' which was first fought by Charles Grant senior about 50+ years ago using ACW figures. I am going to use my 40 mm home cast SYW-ish figures and Battles in the Ancient Regime (BAR) for the rules. The British will come on nearest the camera (Red arrow) and the French far corner (White arrow), the object is to capture the village .

The British force moves onto the table , units are activated by drawing cards (red for the British , black for the French), the British have drawn the red Joker - this will allow them to interrupt the enemy when played later in the game . In the distance the French column is sighted.

The British 18th Regiment of Foote (Royal Irish) lead the advance .

The French move towards the village past the sawmill lead by the Regiment Orleans , supported by a gun and the Swiss Regiment Castellas . 

I include this photo for the benefit of my gaming colleague 'A' who was intrigued by my headgear in a previous photo - it was purchased about 30 years ago in Shetland and has resurfaced in my wardrobe as the dog chewed a hole in my last hat ! . The photo taken locally on Whitbarrow Scar sees the author clutching the map trying to find his location and not give the impression of being lost to his spouse(and dog).

Speaking of strange hats and spouses here is Mrs 'K' with an alarming hat that the dog SHOULD chew ! . A further situation report of the battle will follow. All the best for the New Year.