Sunday, October 31, 2021

World in Flames via FB - 46

A Soviet offensive in the winter's mud saw two hexes captured, representing important river bridgeheads in Lithuania and Manchuria.  Unfortunately Zhukov's offensive in the Ukraine squibbed.

J/F 1944 – Four Seasons in One Turn
Allied 2nd Impulse, the CW declared a Naval and Land spending 10 O-Points, it replenishes convs and sails its naval units to cover convoys and reinforces the N Sea. In the North Sea, British transports and Amphs arrive and load up with US and CW Marines threatening to invade the Axis Coast. In the Med, the ABDC fleet sails from Gibraltar and marries up with the Med fleet to challenge Axis superiority in the E Med 2 box. In the Pacific, the CW transports units from Australia to Singapore to assist with the clearing of the Malaysian peninsular. In the Red Sea reinforcements arrive and are disembarked into the city of Aswan as the CW build-up to retake Egypt gathers momentum – the first 8 factor long range Ftr also arrives from Aust. The USA spend 10 O-Points taking a Land and an Air to support invasion opportunities, conduct massed strategic bombing and GS against Axis targets in both the ETO and PTO* Russia takes a land – and declares a land offensive using Yeremenko in the North, spending 11 O-points – Allied O-point spent 31 points!
As predicted the US acft launch a Port attack against Kiel from its TF11 operating in the Baltic and with both players search rolls being 8 there are no shifts. However, the GERM AA is super-hot (again) as it rolls an effective AA roll of 5, destroying one of the attacking US CV planes and its pilot, the attacking acft sink 3 Convs, damage an old Finnish Gun Boat and abort the Bismarck – not the result the US was after – but port strikes are always at the whim of the dice gods. Naval searches off the Italian coast go badly for the US as the US Corsair that is sent to sink the Italian Conv is surprised by patrolling FW’s (rolled a 8 v 2) and is promptly shot down. Further US searches in the Sea of Japan fail, however in the E Med a lucky 1 – 7 split in favour of the CW finds the Italian supply convoys and rather than fight an air, and with BS superiority the CW converts to surface and sinks the CA Zara, damage the Italian supply Tpt and abort the rest of the Italian shipping, with no ships in the sea area, Italy aborts its acft from the E Med – Egypt is now OOS – swings and roundabouts.
The combined air forces of the US and CW fly 6 x Strategic bombing missions, and all fail despite the clear weather and all bar one being uncontested by Axis Ftrs, GERM industry gets a ‘get out of jail’ for free card. In a similar manner the multiple GS are marginal with many high rolls, and the only success being the Danish port of Frederikshavn. The Allies lament as ALL and I mean ALL the Strat Bombing rolls were low numbers, not one above a 4 and the majority of the GS rolls were high with many 7, 8, and 9’s – if these rolls had been reversed – GERM Industry would have been significantly affected and many axis units would have been inverted. With few GERM units inverted the CW abandons the invasion and disembarks their Marines back to the UK – call it a rehearsal for Operation Overlord.
During the land phase the British launch their assault against the defenders of Oslo as Von Leeb provides emergency supply to the defenders. The Oslo +11 attack with a 9 rolled (20) succeeds at the cost of a British attacking 7.1 GAR. The city is liberated as the Norwegians welcome the CW forces after 4 years of relative benign occupation. In N Africa, the US and CW assault the 2 factor Algerian Territorial at 11:1 taking the city of Algiers as another French Territory is liberated as Mussolini’s African Empire crumbles – onto Libya! A Mountain unit is flown into Sardinia as Bradly is disembarked to coordinate the assault on Cagliari.
In the Pacific a GS roll of 1 sees the Japanese defender in Borneo inverted and eliminated as the US attack with +11 and rolled 14 (24) capturing the last oil field – Borneo is now clear of Japanese forces. China Nationalists in the South launch a +4 assault and roll a -/- resulted with them all inverted. The Communists in the North decline an attack as they jostle for better positions now that Peking is back in their hands. Russia attacks the Manchurian defenders using the recently arrived MECH Div and roll ordinary dice to lose the Mech Div, retreating the defenders – but importantly have now crossed the river line into the Manchurian plains. On the Russian front, GS are minimal although another GERM Ftr is destroyed, the GERM AA again being very effective not rolling less than a 5! The two declared attacks are poor to average rolls, with a Zhukov low odds attack rolling a 5 for a 1/- all invert in the South inflicting a loss on the Russian attackers. In the North with only a 13 rolled the defenders are blitzed back to Berlin for another loss to the Russian but importantly they cross the Vilna River. Although the attacks were disappointing – with no land losses inflicted on the GERM. The Russian air-force claimed victory as they shot down three GERM bombers, including a valuable Condor NAV bomber the GERM now has only four bombers on the Russian front coming into the campaigning season of 44 and with no bombers in reserve (none in the pool or on the spiral) they will have to rely heavily on its land force to defeat the 44 Russian assaults. Allies roll but do not end the turn, 1 needed, advances 2.
Axis 3rd Impulse Weather roll is a 10! Blizzard in the Artic and Temp. GERM takes a Land, Italy a combined and Japan takes a Naval, a first for over year as she sends out 4 x submarines and dynamic moves its Strike Fleet – including sister ships Yamato and Musashi to the coastal port off the China Sea. They are hoping for a bad weather (Storm/Blitz) to conduct a search and destroy mission against the USA naval assets in the S China Sea in the next impulse. The ancient ship Asama, a 1896 veteran sails into the zero box to provide reconnaissance and remove presence of the enemy ships – the US ships fail to find her. The searches by the Japanese Navy are nearly all successful with finds in the Sea of Japan sinking the CA Chicago, and the CA Salt Lake City in the Marianas as she fails 2 x Ds. In the S China Sea subs find and sink 3 Allied Convs – all for no loss to the Japanese. Both Italy and GERM take a combined actions, GERM sails a supply conv to Baltic which the Allies fail to find -Norway back in supply. German and Italian land units are reshuffled and acft are rebased. The Axis roll an 8 and do not roll EOT as the Allies gain a bonus impulse, albeit in atrocious weather.
Allied 3rd Impulse. With Blizzard everywhere and few opportunities the CW takes a Comb, the US a Naval and Russia a land. The CW sails a conv into the N Sea so that it can maintain supply to Norway. They fly a long range Beaufighter into the Italian Coast looking for the Italian Conv supplying Sardinia – declaring their British submarines ‘in’ as the Beaufighter has no Nav factors the GERM again roll well with and surprise the British Ftr and Subs, another handy 2- 8 split sees. The Beaufighter is momentary elated as it is cleared through to bounce and attack the Italian 1 point Nav on the +6/-6 table. Elation is short lived as the NAV rolls a 3 and shoots the Beaufighter down on the -6 table and the return fire at +6 clears the NAV through to damage and abort the submarines – the Italian Coast remains firmly in Axis hands. Searches for conv in the Baltic fail to find. With the last of the GERM Norwegian defenders all inverted and despite the Blizzard, the CW launces a follow up attack – rolling average they destroy the defenders for the cost of their Mtn Corps – Norway is now liberated. In the Pacific, convs are replaced in the S China Sea and two fast battle ships, the sisters Iowa and New Jersey sail to support the CAs Astoria in the off the Japanese Coast to try and engage the 3 x Japanese CA’s – no finds. In the S China Sea the Asama is found and sunk – the only Japanese combat loss at sea. The Allies do not roll EOT, advances by 2 and the turn continues.
Axis 4th Impulse – the Long Winter – the weather Roll is a 4 and ironically for the Russian the Snow arrives in both the Artic and the Temp – Stalin rolls his eyes. End of session – with next week finishing the J/F turn which has seen all four seasons in one month and losses mounting on both sides.
* ETO and PTO European Theatre of Operations and Pacific Theatre of Operations

NW Europe

Norway liberated

Norwegians celebrate the liberation of Oslo and their country

US land in Sardinia - another step closer to invading Italy

North Africa - almost cleared of Italians

E Med - in Allies hands - Egypt OOS

Egypt the CW build up continues

Army Group North - the river line crossed

Army Group South - little progress

Something wrong with our acft - shot down on the -6 table

The Frontline contracts under pressure

1896 fighting through two world wars - sunk j/f 44

Heavy loses for both sides, US CA's take a hammering



Guns of August - 1915 Xmas

This week I was short of time, but we did manage to finish to the end of 1915 and what a bloody year it was.  Impressed at how ell the simple game mechanics simulate WW1.

Hard to see, but the Germans have captured Warsaw
and on the Western Front, are one hex closer to Paris.

Saturday, October 30, 2021

My Armies of Islam for Basic Impetus 2.0

Feeling real good that I got this project finished. 

There are:
  • 4 large units of FP that can be configured as spear or impetus warrior 
  • 5 units of T archer which can be added to the FP spearmen to form large units
  • 5 units of medium cavalry
  • 2 units of medium camelry
  • 2 horse archers
  • 2 camel archers
  • 2 light cavalry javelin
  • 2 light camelry javelin
  • 2 skirmisher javelin
  • 3 skirmishers bow
  • 3 skirmisher sling
  • 1 general

It's rather hard to get a single complete phot that does it all justice,
but this top down view gets close.

And I do like the general figure.
Again, this was a second hand army, all I've done is some make good and rebase.
The "before"images can be found in this post:

Final Units of Arab Mounted

I could or should have said Arab Horse and Camel, but mounted fits in better with Impetus classifications, the rules I have used when creating my Arab Conquest army which actually allows me to create all the Basic Impetus 2.0 Armies of Islam forces.

These figures/units have mainly just been a rebasing and make good exercise from the purchase I made last year and received for Xmas.  

Light cavalry, javelin

Whoops, I can see at least one or two of these guys should have had their eyes fixed.
Painting eyes on 15mm - who would have thought?

Medium cavalry

Camel archers
This is THE Tin Soldier camel figure.
All other figures you see on camels in the following images,
are conversions of this figure.

Camel archers are actually only in the advanced Impetus rules/lists,
but I'm not going to let that stop me from getting them on the table top some how

The man in blue was a gift from Simon.

Impressive and dangerous.

Those lances are really sharp.

I am stunned by the quality of the work on these figures.
Sadly I don't know who did it.

However, it's worth a question in the Facebook The Ancient & Medieval Wargamer group, although I would say the work was done thirty years ago when Tin Soldier were at the height of their popularity in in Australia.

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Later Abbasid Arab versus Thematic Byzantine

Des tried his hand with my Byzantines.  However fortune favoured the Abbasids.

The Abbasids were out scouted 

Both armies advance

Combat is quickly joined

The Byzantines start to give way

The Byzantines collapse.

All over in an hour.  

The Abbasids had a few scratches, but no losses.

World in Flames via FB - 45

This time with pictures, but it is still mud, slush and rain on the Eastern Front.

The start of a New Year, 1944 starts with the Axis having won the initiative last week and having rolled a 1 +1 (2) for very moderate J/F weather - mostly rain, fine in the Med and N Monsoon. GERM and Italy take Combines with Japan taking a land. Secure under the cover of rain the GERM sends a Conv into the Baltic to supply the OOS units in Norway – Allies naval units fail their search. The GERM Raider, the Kormoran HSK-8 searched off the coast of the US, finding and damaging 3 unescorted Allied Convs. German and Italian acft flew out to the Italian Coast and the E Med to provide air cover to the axis shipping. The Italian Subs sail and search in three sea zones but only find in the N Atlantic, but a soft split sees only 3 CW Convs damaged. Searches by the Allies in the E Med and off the Italian Coast triggered by Axis reinforcements fail to find the Axis Convs. Japan takes a land and commence an orderly withdrawal northward in order to shorten up their lines as the Chinese build-up continues. Impulse marker advances two.
Allies 1st Impulse and Russia takes an Air and launches a sweeping GS using Arty and Acft, luck is with the Axis as their AA do not roll less than 4’s and 5’s on ALL their dice, two sets of lowest 1 of 4/6 – impressive shooting by the gunners of the Reich. In a reversal of recent trends in the air, two Russian acft – a 7 Ftr and 5 Sturmovick are shot down by the Luftwaffe for no loss – it would seem that the Luftwaffe has been practicing their dice rolls over Christmas. Further disappointment for the Russian as nearly all the GS fail with a paltry 2 x GERM units inverted for over 20 dice rolls. Surviving Acft return to base and 7 are-reinverted by Russian HQs to ‘try again’ next impulse. A lone Russian strat bomber successfully targets Lodz. The US take a Naval and Land spending 11 O-points. They sail ships to cover convoys, ship reinforcements to the UK and N Africa, their fleet sails again into the Baltic and acft fly into multiple sea zones to support naval operations, with a main effort in the W Med. The CW took a Combined to support European operations, specifically flying air and sailing a fleet into the N Sea. No response to the massed Allied air effort in the W Med or the N Sea. The US searches in the E Med, off the Italian coast but fail to find, but in the Baltic the Russian finds the GERM supply Conv and sinks it – Norway again OOS. The CW GS axis land units in Egypt, Algeria and Norway and fail all attempts. The US inverts one of the defenders in Algiers and declare an attack against the city. Rolling well all the defenders are eliminated with a TOTT roll – Algeria is now liberated – onto Tunisia.
In the Pacific the US finally invade Truk, the first contested Pacific Island Invasion for the US and it is a minor disaster. Despite a +11 assault and a single defender, the roll is below average (8 – well predicted by the GERM) for 2/2 loss, with the US losing HQ Nimitz and a Div in the attack for the loss of the Japanese GAR and then the Coastal defences sink the BS Arizona as it failed its save. However, Truk is now in US hands and will be a handy Major port in the Central Pacific. Not to be outdone the Chinese launce two attacks, the first against the old Capital Peking, at low odds +4.5 but roll well and take the city for the loss of one unit, the second attack in the South against two inverted Japanese defenders is a blood bath as both sides loose two corps each, a less than friendly result – the Chinese were happy to take the exchange as they gain Cadre points and can replace the losses which the Japanese can ill afford to do so. The Impulse marker advanced two.
Axis 2nd Impulse and the weather improves against the odds (1 in a 100) and everyone’s expectation, as the Italian rolled a second 1 - rain in the Artic and fine everywhere else! Not the roll the Axis wants, worse the impulse marker now only advances 1, setting up a potential for a longer turn for J/F. This benefits the Allies, certainly the bonus clear weather does and the opportunity for a longer turn. The GERM takes a land to readjust and reinforce their Russian front line, especially in Romania where the weather zone is temperate and unseasonably fine. The ‘Gustav’ fires again and this time success!, inverting the entire adjacent Russian 3 Unit stack - this will help significantly reduce the Russian ‘fine weather’ attack options. Rail movements see units sent back to Italy, including Rome now that the N African campaign is ending. In the E Med the Italians take a combined and sail out its Tpt evacuating a valuable 7.1 WP Garrison from Benghazi recognising that the Allies are advancing along the N African coast ‘at the rapid rate’ and that the GAR will be better off relocating to and defending in Europe. The Allies get excited as they search and get a 1 – 9 split in their favour. However, with only a single US CA in the 3 box, the shifts cannot get an X or D on the Tpt so they elect to fight the Axis Air. Marginal success as they only shoot down a single NAV the Bv float plane, but in the process have all their own NAVs aborted by the Axis air – 11 and 12’s on the A2A table will do that. Bad news for the lone US CA Louisville as the second round of combat sees the Axis find the CA and it is sunk by the GERM and Italian Nav’s – she failed 2 x D’s a save would have avoided the sink.
In the Far East, Japan takes a second land to reorganise and continue its march North taking advantage of being in supply and the bonus fine weather – the retreat of the Japanese National Army has begun in earnest. The loss of Peking has straightened their line, but the Chinese have a head of steam and are now one hex away from the coast and sense that 44 will be the year that sees their country liberated!
Allied 2nd Impulse, the CW declares a Naval and Land spending 10 O-Points, it sails its naval units to cover convoys and reinforces the N Sea. In the Med, the ABDC fleet sails from Gibraltar and marries up with the Med fleet to challenge Axis units in the E Med 2 box. In the Pacific, the CW transports units from Australia to Singapore to assist with the clearing of the Malaysian peninsular. Russia will take a land – pondering whether to declare a land offensive using Zhukov and the US will take a Land and Air as the clear skies open opportunities to port strike, strategically bomb and GS using its ever-increasing air force. Photos show the incomplete 2nd impulse as the Allies advance into Tunisia and Sardinia – The CW will declare an attack against Oslo as the fine weather will see it liberated – but they will wait for the results of the US GS phase to see if the GERM HQ gets inverted or whether it elects to provide emergency supply to the isolated defenders.

The Russian Front

Army Group North - still raining

Army Group south - Still mostly raining - Stalin demands an offensive.

Norway - OOS and under pressure as the clear weather
gives the CW an excellent chance to liberate Oslo.

The W Med - Allied land forces advance to Tunisia and Sardinia

E Med - the next battle ground as the Royal Navy challenges Axis domination

The Pacific - Truk in US hands as the last Japanese stronghold is taken

Fine weather oops - not what the Japanese wants - awaiting the US response

Losses mixed bag - but Japan is hurting badly - compounded by their small build

Monday, October 25, 2021

Guns of August - 1915

In our next session of this classic game Richard and I almost completed a whole year.  Strangely, not much changed.

Italy has entered the war, drawing away Austrian forces from the Russian Front, however the Germans have shifted troops to fight the Russians and made some progress towards capturing Warsaw, but not quite there yet.

Things will get interesting when Rumania enters the war.

Sunday, October 24, 2021

135 grams of Soviets

I continue to work on my Soviets, but the reinforces are just a trickle at the moment.

STZ Komsomolets.  Not sure of brand.

While meant to be towing AT guns or light artillery, I've been using them to represent motorised infantry for Rommel games.

Friday, October 22, 2021

World in Flames via FB - 44


Normally I would post photos BUT my new I-Phone 13 which takes great photos won't download through my email account - god only knows why. When I find out what I am doing or not doing I will post later - technology should have stuck with my I7 Blah!
N/D 43 – EOT AND A NEW YEAR 1944
Allied 3rd Impulse continues with the weather being snow in the Artic and Temperate Russia’s Land Offensive is declared with two attacks against Army Group South. The attacks are a mixture of 50/50 success and failure – in part to the GERM flying all his remaining 6 x bombers to support one of the attacks, changing the odds significantly as every Axis bomber is cleared through, and a bonus with the Russian 7 Factor Ftr and its pilot being shot down on a handy 19. The poor attack roll results in a -/- with all the Russians fully inverted – a lesson there for the Russian if you are going to expend O-Points on an attack make sure you have Ftr cover to support the attack. Russia’s second attack is more successful on a +14 as they top the table - just - at 23, destroying a Div and a Corps as they advance upright and take another hex of Bessarabia. With the US and CW remaining land actions sees the Milan MIL in Norway eliminated with a top of the table attack by combined British and US land forces as they advance to the outskirts of Oslo. In N Africa the CW, together with the US land forces advance to Algiers the next roadblock on the road to Libya. US pacific forces combined sees naval units sail into the Solomon’s Sea and successfully GS Truk from its CVL air groups, Truk is now inverted but no invasion, acft are rebased including LL Air-Cobras to Russia.
Axis 3rd Impulse - Italy and Japan, concerned about their oil reserves take no cost combined. GERM takes a land and adjusts its line under the pressure of Russian land forces, stepping back a hex in E Poland to straighten its line, leaving an inverted Inf as a rear-guard to cover the withdrawal. Japan sends a Conv out to the Sea of Japan so that it can maintain supply to China/Manchuria – a US search fails to find. With snow on the continent there is little other activity. Italy, likewise, sails a conv to supply Egypt, again no find by the US acft or CA in the rain. No Axis EOT roll as they roll an 8, and the N/D turn continues.
Allied 4th Impulse – weather roll is 7(+1) for an 8, the same as the previous impulse, so no clear weather for the Allies in S/O or N/D – disappointment for the Western Allies – Stalin is happy with the snow. All the Allies take land impulses, Russia continues its ‘push’ under the cover of snow. GS have limited success with a Corps turned face down, in the skies above both the Italian and Russian loose a Ftr each. The attacks are again a 50/50 with the Russian attacking the line rolling an exchange – losing a 9 GBA INF, the Axis a 5.5 Italian Mech. In the second attack, success rolling top of the table eliminating another German stack and taking another hex of Bessarabia. The 7.4 Siberian is upgraded back up to 9.4 GBA status. In Norway the CW declare an attack against two GERM Corps (INF/MIL) North of Oslo and roll top of the table eliminating both units and advancing to the outskirts of the city which is now under siege and OOS. With one of its defenders already inverted its liberation by the Allies is now a certainty. In N Africa the US and CW forces move further East only limited by the rain, no inversions against the defenders in Algiers means no attack – they are in the mountains, and it is raining. A CW 7.6 MECH races across the desert to capture the Tunisian port of Gabes, another step closer to Libya. The Chinese ‘no cost’ land sees communist partisans in Southern China launch a 1:1 attack and with nothing to lose but themselves, do exactly that – 2 x PART lost on a roll of 5. It was clear weather, and they were hopeful of an exchange. US Pacific forces capture the two Iwo Jima Island groups off the coast of Japan as rebasing Acft, including the ‘Black Window’ arrive to operate from the forward bases – ominous days ahead for the Japanese
Allies roll an EOT 3 – initiative marker advance by 1 in the Axis favour – now in the zero sector with the Axis winning ties. Partisan roll sees them stay at home by their fires as none turn up, a great relief for the Japanese. Rebases, production and reinforcements for the New Year. The bonus impulse has helped the Allies inflict some 60 BPs of losses on the Axis this turn, a handy deficit for a winter turn.
The year of 1943, rather than being a defining year for the Allies has seen it favour the Axis in both the critically poor weather and short turns. This has constrained the Allies offensive operations and has set the Allies timeline back, giving the Axis a glimmer of hope that they can snatch a victory. We play historical objectives with an Axis victory declared if they hold 10 Objectives by the end of the game. The current objective count has the Axis at 26, when compared to their historical position of 33, so the Axis are currently 7 behind – mostly due to Japan’s poor position and failures in their early campaign. The Allies however must maintain the pressure and must capture a minimum of 17 more objective cities in the 10 turns that are left, 5 of which are poor weather turns – it will be an interesting race. The Allies will be hoping for longer turns and fine weather – both will be excellent. Conversely, the Axis will be seeking a similar trend in 44 as they experienced in 43. Ideally winning the initiative and short bad weather turns. 1944 will present the Axis, specifically the GERM with some significant challenges as the Russian build up is gaining momentum, as its air-force in both quality and quantity starts to bring pressure on the Russian front, compounding this will be D Day landing in Europe that the US/CW must commit too if they want to win the game. Certainly 1944 has not started well for the Allies with the Axis winning the initiative, bad weather – no clear or snow – but that is only the first roll, at least the Axis’ weather roll of a 1 has given the Allies some hope as it is now a ‘straight’ roll, no plusses, and an increased chance of a fine weather roll – at least it wasn’t a 10 – storm and blizzard.
Next session is the start of a New Year, 1944 with the Axis having the first impulse in rain.
Hopefully with a double photo shoot hahahaha

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Later Abbasid Arab versus Sassanids

A new configuration of my Arabs to make an army to fight Thematic Byzantines, but first they had to deal with some Sassanids.

The Sassanids were out scouted and that put them at a disadvantage

The Sassanids advanced their light cavalry.
The Arab light cavalry on the right was wiped out with one volley of javelins.

But the Sassanid light cavalry on their right suffered a similar fate,
even if it did take multiple flights of arrows.

The Sassanid cavalry bravely charges

They faired poorly against the Arab spearmen,
but bested the Arab cavalry.
The elephants charged but ran out of puff just before contact.

Puffed out elephants are subsequently shot to bits.

Meanwhile the remaining Arab cavalry had got the better of their opponents
and the Sassanids called it a night.