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En Garde! Beware the Mighty Blow!

Osprey Publishing do seem to have cornered the market for what might once have been called ‘back of a postcard’ wargames rules. Easy to understand and quick, lively games, En Garde is yet another winner. Who better than bring their own brand of postcard humour to the table than that old swash buckler James, a Oliver Reed lookalike if ever there was one…?

In this evening’s scenario, the scheming Count de Rochefort and the Cardinal’s guard have been sent to investigate strange noises emanating from a local nunnery. At the other end of the avenue are a motley band of Musketeers and some swinging bags of coin……


Of course the Cardinal’s guard will do everything to save the fallen women. It would be a close run thing as to who would save the last nun!


The brave D’Artagnan was first through the gates, praying that the Mother Superior was out no doubt!


But, the puritanical Rochefort was close behind and there were plenty of souls to save.


The two opposing banded eye each other in the avenue. Blood would be spilt before virtue was endangered.


Expecting to have to haggle, those damnable Musketeers brought two halberdiers that gained them an advantage against the Cardinal’s men. Expecting to have to be carried home after their exertions, the Musketeers brought two street toughs along for the heavy work of carrying Arthos home.


Cloaks were torn and the blood flowed. Casualties were about equal until the thugs clambered over the garden wall and cudgelled the poor guardsmen from behind…..

Even the orange sellers were involved. The Count slew two of the Musketeers followers but then received a thrust to his nether regions and decided enough was enough….


The Musketeers were victorious and the nuns were richer!


It was a good thing that the Count could only dream of saving those poor girls😜

En Garde are great fun set of rules. They are no for the button counters out there but rather for the corset counter. Combat is by opposed dice rolls, weapons and tactics deciding how many attack and defence dice are thrown. The game is very well produced and a good time is guaranteed! My favourite tactic was the “mighty blow” by the way, but the photos have been censored!


Thanks for reading!

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Troll-call, Imperial Eagles

KLast week’s conversation at Tercio Towers revolved around Virtual Reality and the future of tabletop gaming. I have to admit to my reservations as to whether you and I will be collecting, painting and playing with miniatures. My greatest shock was to see the “augmented reality” of the I-phone 8. Looking through the lens on the I-phone, you could see a 3D apocalyptic battlefield , and the finishing touches were provided by a lumbering Titan and flying spacecraft.

 Could our gaming tables stand up to such competition? The jury is out but we also have to deal with the present day Internet. Two years ago, I was reading a review of Imperial Eagles, a Napoleonic ruleset from Spain. Unfortunately for the author, he reacted on The Miniatures Page trolls. Dermot, the author of these fine rules, very much in the style of Lassalle, was crucified. He had planned to open his own thread on The miniatures Page and even this was a cause for derision. Dermot withdrew from TMP and the rules, in the UK at least, seem to have lost traction. But, they seem to be alive and well in Spain. I include the details of a forthcoming competition and ask you to give these rules a second look- if only to annoy TMP rules experts. Dermot is always open to questions and can be contacted through Campaign Games.


Imperial Eagle Tournament

Barcelona Show Saturday 18th November.

Meet us and buy at Fabra y Coats Creation Factory:

Carrer Sant Adrià, 20 (Sant Andreu) Barcelona 08030.

Metro Station: Sant Andreu, Red Line. (L1)

Bus: 11, 40, 73, 126 y N9

Renfe Train station: Sant Andreu Comtal

Participate in the Imperial Eagle tournament. Beginners welcome.

To participate send us an e-mail: DERMOT@telefonica.net
Organised by DAU Historic with Alpha Ares club.

 

Eggmuhl 1809 now in English

Eggmuhl 1809 now on sale in English

Eggmühl 1809 in English and in Spanish versions with complete historical lists for Imperial Eagle Rules. Bonus Scenario with 3 maps.
Find Out More at Campaign-games-Miniatures-Blogspot!

Tercio Towers 2027?

Copyright © 2017 Campaign Game Miniatures, All rights reserved.

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Mortem et Gloriam- For those who are about to die…

Today is my birthday! A benchmark in any one’s life, fifty years old. Fortunately it also my son’s birthday so instead of wasting money on drunken excess, I can take my wife’s kids off to build-a-bear workshop and invest in much needed soft toys. I don’t think they will expect the bear that I intend to build and leave in the shop😏

This week’s game reminded me of just how many years have passed. It is now over twenty five years since a fresh faced youth approached Richard Bodley-Shipman to join Newport Wargames Club. Now we have lost that old goat to the world of computer wargames and he can only be contacted through various dark web addresses. It was about this time, I embarked on competition wargaming with the West Country Berk-ley Vale gang. How we laughed as Mssrs. McGlynn and Unwin ridiculed our best painting efforts and brought up arcane rule amendments that meant forests could move and dice rolls were cocked “because” in Slimbridge “you will find, all the tables aren’t flat!”😥

Mr. mc Glynn of course encouraged my entry into competition gaming. Helpfully he told me how Polybian Romans were a terrible choice in D.B.M and he was right. He did suggest the use of a waterway, but his advice was to put the feature in front of our army and not on a legal flank. But, the Republican Roman army has always attracted me. All those stout legionaries conquering in the face of huge losses and incompetent general’s, you can see why I was attracted.


My army had two “TUG”s, tactical groups, of elite legionaries on the left. To their right I positioned, three legions in their manipulator formation. Mortem quite neatly allows the hastati and spear armed veterans to be in the same formation. My brilliant plan was to position my Thracians in the rough on the left, careering out of cover in the first turn. However, the dispositions are not written down in this game system and the wily Damian countered with some very mean looking “kettle-men”. In fact I was lucky, my whole ally contingent was not unreliable. The cards dealt need just one less colour card to make them very unhappy hillmen indeed.

The Selucids army facing me would always be a tough opponent. I was expecting imitation legionaries and Galatians but Damion brought an earlier pike heavy version, with far too many elephants in the centre and cataphracts on my right.
 

My counter was to put my Italian medium foot into the rough ground in front of the cataphracts and bravely position my equites behind my legions. I did have some spear armed veterans here too. I would like to give them their real name but predictive text keeps changing it to “fairies”. In the end, that was quite appropriate.


My gallant attack on the left was matched by Damian’s own Thracians. My javelin armed Thracians, proxying for Numidians, made his cataphracts pay but the fight for the rough ground was costing me dearly. Three hits on the cataphracts was a moment to savour though. Mortem shooting is fast and deadly. Good cards allow one to recover some losses but never enough.

In the centre, my legionaries thought better of taking on the Selucids elephants. Their accompanying velites contented themselves with adding some hits to Damian’s skirmish screen. Skirmish units are quite sizeable in Mortem but can also be pushed back without hinderance by formed troops. A neat rule to stop stone throwing peasants halting phalanxes.


But Damian was smiling and that either means money is being exchanged or that he has a devious plan. As my wallet had already been emptied by investment in my ADLG Indians, it could only mean disaster. On my left, the last gasp of Damian’s cataphracts forced my Numidians to retire. On my right. The heavy cavalry tore through my legions. The Roman noble horse being conspicuous by their absence. It had been a great game but the Republic would have to fight again to gain victory.


Thanks for reading! Fifty years old and still coming second!😅

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Need an Indian Army? Rattle-cans!

The importance of setting oneself goals cannot be over-estimated. There are too many distractions in life not to. But, the critical stage that is all too often missed out is of course, just to get started! I mean you have to pick up a brush, dip it in the paint and apply it. So many fellow hobbyists forget this truism and the result is the much maligned lead pile. One is put in mind of the companion of Laurence of Arabia who neglected to care for his camel because in the glorious future all camels would be looked after by Arab specialists, in purpose built centres. Meanwhile , while waiting for utopia, his camel died……

The task at hand!

My regular reader will no doubt remember that I set myself a weekly task, namely six painted miniatures a week. Now, I know what you are thinking, where are they? Well having kept up the task for a month, I must admit to having slipped. I did base some trees but the task of painting a 15mm competition army in two months has used up all my hobby time. And, two weeks into the build, I have most of the infantry done. I have gone back to what are known as “rattlecans” , on the advice on my favourite YouTube gaming site, Tabletop Minions. The trick is to limit the palette and let washes substitute for any real artistry.


Day One, pretend to be fixing the fallen down fence panel whilst cleaning up seventy miniatures. Xyston miniatures are without a doubt my favourite miniatures, so characterful and crisp. 


Day two, take yourself off to the garage for a “weights” session. Instead of a bar I lifted Army Painter “British uniform”. This is quite apt of course, as these Indians were described by the Greeks as khaki or dust-coloured. As these were the foot soldiers I painted them darker than their Aryan lords in the chariots and on the elephants.


Day three, with a brush look for any bits the aerosol missed. The closest I got was Vallejho English uniform. Games Workshop chesnut ink was then washed over the whole lot….


You will notice that several hundred Normans are also receiving a similarly cavalier “painting” treatment, but this time with a black undercoat. Remember, momentum is your friend! Little things like conversations to your partner have to take second place. We want quick results. Children are allowed if their efforts add to your painting totals. Whilst baby sitting my wife’s children, “we” managed to paint five more 40k warrior clerics…


And our new approach is saving money. If you mix up too much paint, slap it on the next minis in the queue. Below we have khaki horses…..on the Bayeau tapestry they were green!


The bases have been ordered and the average works out at about eight miniatures a day. When you hear, someone, anyone say,”I don’t have the time”, please refer them to the range of spay cans available from any car repair establishment. My next experiment is going to be the highlighting done with cans too. By keeping the number of colours low, you’ll be pleasantly surprised how quickly the army comes together. Take my advice and set yourself a target. Please come and see my army at the Rivermead in November, if only to see my maiden guard, who are receiving a little more in terms of detailing!😏

Just eight chariots and two elephants to go! Before, twenty Napoleonic dragoons, World War Two GIs, feudal Knights ………..etc…..etc

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Starting Over

Getting back into routine after the Summer has been hard. So many demands on our time and sometimes hobbies have to get pushed to the back of the to-do queue. It’s half way through September and I have a bit of a backlog. Don’t fret dear reader I’m ready to start posting again but I thought I’d start off gently with a visit to Damion at Ancient and Modern Games.

Damion bought Donnington miniatures a good few years ago now but he really has added so much to the existing ranges. He has a range of New Era figures- all cute faces and beautifully sculpted, plus increasing numbers of upgraded Donningtons. There was even a rumour of some wonderful new developments but this is a closely guarded secret at the moment! You’ll be the first to know though.

Painted miniatures are available but Damion is no slouch himself. One obvious factor in his favour is that unlike us mere mortals, he is meticulous in everything he does. Every miniature, terrain piece, even the cupboards that he built to house them, are all of the highest quality.


Damion is also a stockist of Simon Hall’s Mortem et Glorium. This system came to Godendag in January and started quite a stir. The armies are much larger than our usual staple L’art de la Guerre. The classical armies at 1200 points would also appear to be quite considerably larger than the old D.B. M. 500 point armies.


The rules seem very well thought out. I especially liked the pre battle system that positions the competing armies into a believable scenario. It allows those aspiring Alexanders to winkle their opponents out of suitable ground in the days before the clash. Combat and movement is fast and bloody- bases are removed as a consequence of shooting and melee.


I greatly enjoyed our run-through but the distances and number of miniatures means that 25mm will have to remain L’art de la Guerre. The rules are next on my shopping list – with mention that Renaissance , napoleonics and even World War Two are on there way from Simon Hall. There may also be computer games and boardgames to tie in with the system! Thanks to Damion for a great introduction. More reviews are available on YouTube including explanations of the rules. I spent a happy three hours listening to the Meeples podcast /interview with the meglamaniac Simon !

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Solferino – Fire and Fury

What better way to spend the last day of the holidays than playing a wargame all afternoon? Dave and I were attacking the Austrians in Solferino, Mike was defending whilst John Lowrie sent abusive texts to his hockey team. The rules were our favourite Regimental Fire and Fury, with amendments to cater for 1859. I’ll let the photos tell the story…….


Our task was to capture the town in the centre. Dave was confident that his Crimean war veterans could storm the cemetery. He attacked in battalion columns of the 45th Ligne, with the 6th Field artillery attempting to silence the Austrian artillery.


On the right, my zouaves and Turcos would skirt the graveyard and take the hill overlooking Solferino. Although the French  rifles and guns out ranged the Austrians, their fire was causing enough disruption to hinder any rapid advance.


The 45th assaulted the Austrian strongpoint but the first two charges were repulsed. My Turcoes flanked the position but these uncovered the Austrian position on the hills to the right.


Even with all the first regiment commited, the first brigade was only just holding on to the bottom of the cemetery ridge. However, the Feld jaeger on the hill were beginning to wish they hadn’t opened up on the tough North Africans.


The afternoon was drawing to a close and our first brigade was still outside of the town. Mike Lane ordered his reserve regiment to counterattack. I had thoughts of rolling up the Austrian line from the flanking hill but the ridge concealed yet more Austrian infantry.


It would be hoped that our Sardinian allies had done better than us! Mike held The position and we had run out of time. Mike has an amazing collection of minis and he always makes the Tercio welcome. We’ve been promised the Seven Year’s war next time so stay tuned. Thanks very much for reading!

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The Great Compromise…..whatever happened to?

As one holiday period draws to a close, my memories of a trip to Texas are still strong. Having spent many years watching re-runs of The Alamo as a boy, suddenly I was there. Quite by chance I realised that the low walls on the way into the town centre were in fact the walls of the Mission. Passing to the entrance and there right in front of me was the most memorable , if heightened, iconic building in the whole world.  I had a lump in my throat as our guide ran through the events of the battle, despite the crowd containing a large number of nationalistic Mexicans. The assault on the Alamo was an obvious source of pride for these Mexicans.  My Jewish friends recount the Hollocaust, the battles of Israel against Islamo-Nazis, or even the escape from bondage in Egypt, as a source of pride. But Liberal America seems to have a problem with statues in memory of the Confederacy.


I must admit to mixed feelings at seeing the monuments in Austin. Weren’t these the slave owners? Weren’t these racists intent on propping up an evil system of oppression? Perhaps some Confederates were, perhaps some Northerners were evangelising angels intent on setting their brothers “free”. Rather most Southerners were, in their eyes, defending the Constitution, stopping its revision sixty one years after the revolution. Most Southerners weren’t slave owners and resented the extension of state control of private property. One thing is for sure, very few on either side marched off to war on the issue of slavery.


So, we have fanatical monument haters bravely attacking the monuments of a defeated Confederacy. Could it be that the U.S.A. appears  to have abandoned the “Great Compromise’? The Compromise that saw the South admit that the Union needed to be preserved and the North, for their part, admitted that the Confederacy fought bravely for a cause that they believed in. The Left don’t want to be reminded of the North’s victory because they also hate the Union too. It is reminiscent of the British police chasing Islamophobes on the net, as the Religion of Peace inspires yet another hideous physical attack on innocents. No one must question the ideology in case “offence” is caused, meanwhile the followers of the ideology must have some how misenterpreted the command to attack and enslave non-believers.

While the Left attacks statues, the indulged and ignorant ignore the impact of the most intolerant and persistent ideologies ever dreamt up. Perhaps those espousing socialism should be reminded just how Trotsky, Lenin, Stalin and Hitler dealt with dissent and how popular their brand of socialism was with the average Russian, Pole, Ukrainian or Jew. Hiding History will only lead to disaster for all of us, and re-writing it will leave the path open for even greater evils. Let’s not allow anymore statues to fall.