Friday, August 28, 2015

Ordonnance Burgundian vs Indian

The Indians had traveled along way to trample the vineyards of Burgundy.  My recently reinforced troops were ready to take on Mark W's recently completed Indian army in an 800 point Field of Glory encounter.

That's all of my army deployed around its fortified camp.  Only a small part of the Indian horde can be seen.

There was a lot of them.

My artillery deployed behind field fortifications.

It was hard to decide on a course of action and I started to shift my knights to my right flank.  Longbowmen advanced to pin the enemy to enable this maneuver.

The Indians stayed away from the centre

The photo is blurred due to the excitement of the first clash.  My knights should have had the foot for dinner, but it went badly.  At least my handgunners got in a shot.

But then things got a lot worse.  At least my longbowmen are getting some shots in (they had earlier been shot up by the light foot, but were rallied).

On the left my knights arrive just in time to save the crossbowmen.

The Indian right flank is in trouble.

Things are in the balance on my right.

My longbow break the enemy which causes a collapse of the enemy position.  Yes, I lost a unit of knights, but it was isolated.

My left hand unit of knights is doing well, extremely well.

It was left to my centre unit of knights and longbow to complete the enemy collapse.  

The black square can be attributed to the effectiveness of my artillery.

Great game!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

My First Game of Saga - Vikings versus Scots

Big thanks to Andrew for helping Olivier and myself through our first game.  I am very happy to say my investment in figures, rules and dice plus time was well rewarded by a very enjoyable and tense game.  The scenario was a basic six turns to kill the opposing warlord.  As raw novice players we were a little bit over generous with the terrain.

I ran one unit of beserkers, four 8 man units of warriors and a unit of 12 bow armed levy.  The Scots had three units of 8 man warriors, one 8 man hearthguard and 12 bow armed levy.

The forces as seen from my left flank.

The forces on my right.

My bow advanced and started shooting, they came off the worse for it, but did get one of the enemy Hearthguard.

Then some Scots warriors got stuck into my levy.  Remarkably they survived.

I made my first serious attack with some warriors against the Scot's Hearthguard.  I sacrificed to Valhalla, but to little good.

The dice tell the story - you need fives or better to get hits on Hearthguard.  I had some back up moves (like rerolling misses), but didn't realise they had to be declared before combat.

However, while not pictured, my second unit of warriors on the right finished off the enemy Hearthguard, but the cost was high - I had one warrior left out of the sixteen committed.

My beserkers hacked the warriors that had attacked my levy to bits although Loki had to finish them off later (remove enemy unit with three figures of less and not Hearthguard).

I had six levy, two beserkers and one warrior to protect my Warlord and all were fatigued.  I started pulling back.

Action then slowly developed on the right, around some rocky ground.

The Scots are two weak to take advantage of my much diminished centre and right.

So they get stuck into the left.  The advantage was mine as I had them down to scoring hits on a two or better.  Again the die tell the story.  However it was not all one-sided and both this unit of Scots and the other remaining one were held and repulsed,

Victory went to my Vikings when we counted up the losses.

Excellent game.  Lots of decisions to make, but only simple rules to contend with.

The new Marchal IV Edition of NAPOLEON'S BATTLES has been released

Great news as I have been waiting for this for a while.  The following link takes you to the supporting website:

The distribution is via Caliver Books and the item can be found here:

I just ordered mine and with postage it came to 45.62 pounds, which I expect will be just over $100 Australian by the time bank currency fees are added.  I've recently spent that getting the Saga rules and one expansion and must have spent well over $200 on FOG and its army lists.  All I have to do is wait...

I must say that the downloadable PDF that Ganesha Games provide is very satisfying and good value. Galleys and Galleons cost around $15 and I had it immediately.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Kiev to Rostov - Turns 48, 49 and 50

Weather is still dry, but troops are having to be sent to Army Group Centre which is slowing the pace and strength of the Axis attacks.

End of Turn 48.

The Axis attempt to break in to the South of the Kharkov defences, but are encircled.

The probe and retreat tactic of the Axis continues as they try to surprise the Soviets and capture a rail bridge.  A bit gamey as the Soviets can only blow the bridges up if there are Axis units within seven hexes.

End of Turn 50.  The Axis have freed their trapped troops, but the Soviets hope that it has cost them valuable time.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Songs of Blades and Heroes - the song goes on

Thanks to Paul for organising this game which was the next verse to our previous SOBH game.

This was my band.

These were the guys I had to get past.

I got lucky and was able to gang up on the Minotaur.  It was still touch and go, but I got him eventually.  After that it got exciting, too exciting to take photos.

One of the mushrooms came in and had a repeat experience of the Minotaur.

Then my shooters took out the enemy wizard.

Then my wizard made a run for it.  The two remaining fungi moved in.  It looked good for my escape, but then disaster...  I survived the first attack, but lost some minions.  Again I had a chance to make good my escape, but by this time the remaining fungi were to close and they got me.

Excellent game system.  Moves fast, simple but sophisticated mechanics producing twists and rallies with a good amount of decisions to make as to what to do.

Paul has provided this background for the game and a further picture along with a sneak preview of the next game.

A clump of fibres broke off from the towering thing's trunk, jerking upwards to form a rudimentary arm. Its spotted cap lolled from side to side, and just below it a jagged rent tore open, its jagged edges presenting a mockery of teeth. Soon this harmless mushroom would complete its transition to fungoid, joining the other two. Jeff pursed his lips – no, not harmless. These were Death Caps. They had never been harmless. His brother had always told him that the world was not as harmless as he believed, a point finally driven home by his untimely death at the hands of that arrogant popinjay from the peninsula. He may not have time to learn new, lethal spells before he cut off the Italio's retreat, but he now had all he needed to gain revenge.

In this second instalment, Jeff (with stats as before), one minotaur (also as before) and three fungoids (3+, 3, poison, squishy) confronted Lorenzo's party (all as before) in a small hamlet as they attempted to make for the coast and home. The sole victory condition for Lorenzo was for him to escape from the opposite table edge, and Jeff's task was to take him out of action before he could.

The mushrooms used their proximity to their leader to group move over to one side of the buildings, followed by several reactions to advance further and block that route of escape. The minotaur, followed by Jeff, moved to the centre of the building, where the archers and The Hoplite were digging in with a view to thinning their enemies' numbers before making a bolt for it. Massing around the minotaur, The Hoplite and the bandits soon added more blood to their vials. Eventually, their bows took down Jeff, and while the fungoids recovered their morale Lorenzo made a break for it and a thrilling chase ensued. The bandits tried their best to pin their adversaries in combat, but with The Hoplite's slowness having left him out of the pursuit, their efforts were for naught. One fungoid broke away, intercepted Lorenzo near to the table edge, and beat him down, poisoning him in the process.

Willy shot a haunted look over his shoulder, fearing pursuit. He had managed to snatch his employer from under that leering horror, and was making for the coast. There was no chase; the green wizard had fallen and the beasts had turned their focus upon his brothers. Their shouting in the distance gave Willy no pause – they couldn't pay him, but his boss could. The dull clanging the automaton made as it toppled over, having ground to a halt without Lorenzo's instruction, further convinced him he was right to flee. To the coast, and there the ship's apothecary.

Next time:

There might be no honour amongst thieves, but there should at least be the appearance of it. When word reached the Black Crest that Soulful Willy had abandoned his brothers to their fate (which couldn't be faulted), and that he had negotiated for their full hire fee to be paid to him alone, bandit chief Ronaldo Padovini, known as The Executioner, had to live up to his title. And so here they were, breaking into the laboratories of the now famously sickly Lorenzo di Torino, to both punish Willy for his arrogance and take their gold scudos. Ronaldo paused. He did not like increasingly-less distant thunderous sound the air carried to his ears.

The first installment can be found here:

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Galleons of Glory

At the club's games day I took Paul through a game of Galleys and Galleons.  This time I wanted to try out multiple ships per side.

Using my five serviceable Sails of Glory ships (I still have one in a box to unpack and rebase) plus my paper boat I constructed the following two fleets using the online Ganesha fleet builder tool:


HMS Defence
Points 102
Quality 3+
Combat 3
Special Rules
Drilled Soldiers, Flagship, Galleon Rigged, High Castles, Master Gunner, Trained Gun Crews, Veteran NCOs
HMS Sophomore
Points 62
Quality 3+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Drilled Soldiers, Galleon Rigged, High Castles, Master Gunner, Trained Gun Crews, Veteran NCOs
HMS Meleager
Points 50
Quality 3+
Combat 1
Special Rules
Drilled Soldiers, Galleon Rigged, Master Gunner, Trained Gun Crews, Veteran NCOs, Yare


Points 100
Quality 3+
Combat 4
Special Rules
Drilled Soldiers, Flagship, Galleon Rigged, High Castles, Master Gunner
Points 60
Quality 3+
Combat 3
Special Rules
Drilled Soldiers, Galleon Rigged, High Castles, Master Gunner
Points 38
Quality 3+
Combat 1
Special Rules
Drilled Soldiers, Galleon Rigged, Master Gunner, Yare

These are all my approximations of the different classes of Napoleonic warships as they might be represented by Galleys and Galleons.  The French Quality could perhaps be lowered to 4+ as I hadn't fully appreciated the Flagship rule.  I also felt that for future, bigger games, frigates could be used to extend the flagship's leadership range.

Set up as per the rules.  I was the French sailing with the wind.

My flagship got in the first shot.

But then a lucky shot from HMS Defence started a fire in Imperial's rigging.

Despite numerous attempts to put out the fire it spread and caused a massive explosion.

Unfortunately we had to leave the game there, but a clear British victory.

At the close of the day I had a quick run through with Simon, but without the frigates or flagship rule (because I forgot about it).  It went badly for the French again (no pictures), but at least I was able to make an escape.

So far I've really enjoyed Galleys and Galleons.  I just have to worry about the coming of the Kraken.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Chariots of Death

I participated in two races and failed to place in either.  At least I didn't die.

The first race had eight entrants.  My chariot is the one in the middle with the four black horses.

I started well...

But then I got wiped and had to lose a turn.

Andrew, raw novice, streaked past the winning line to become experienced and deny everyone a chance to even place.

For the second race we had ten chariots competing for glory.

By the time the race finished there were only six left.  

The chariot with the red blankets won and the one with the four white horses (Gerry) which had been in the lead all the way placed second.  All the rest of the surviving chariots were lapped.  There were four deaths: Mario (crashed, fled, run over by his son Daniel who went on to win), Andrew (the previous winner - crashed, survived, tried to leap onto a passing chariot - it went badly), Brendan (crashed) and Oliver (crashed).  Special mention must go to Paul, who crashed, but was able to regain an empty chariot as it passed by.  The other surviving chariots were David's (green blankets - he also served as ring master), Stephen B and myself.

The flier for the race meeting can be found here:

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Kiev to Rostov - Turns 46, 47 and 48 (part)

Turn 46 was mud, but it was only a brief taste of what is hopefully to come.

End of the muddy Turn 46.

Kharkov's defenses look a bit weak on the flanks.

Appalling picture, but at the end of Turn 47 the Axis are back on the move

Kharkov is toughening up, but the Axis assault on Belgorod just to the north met with immediate success.  Thankfully now is when Army Group South has to start relinquishing motorised and armoured troops to Army Group Centre.  However they have a lot of infantry divisions slowly approaching.

End of the Axis Turn 48 and their attack on the northern defense line was checked after their air-force failed to interdict the Soviet HQs and stop them sending in reinforcements.

There is a weak pocket around Dnepropetrovsk where the Axis are trying to capture the Dnepr bridges by making surgical strikes and then quickly withdrawing before the Soviets decide to blow the bridges (the red counters represent the distance the Axis must maintain from the city to remove the risk of Soviet bridge demolition).
Further south and east the Soviets are busy building a new line to cover Stalino and the Donbas as well as the road to Rostov.