Tuesday, 28 September 2010

French Napoleonic Mounted Colonel

Above is the completed Victrix mounted French Colonel I've been working on over the last few days. I did the horse using layers - Vallejo Neutral Grey to start and then adding a slight bit of white for each consecutive highlight. I decided against using the Army Painter on this because I really wanted him to stand out. The flock and gravel are Galeforce Nine, except for the sprouting grass which is courtesy of Colgate (the bristles from an old toothbrush!).

Thursday, 23 September 2010

28mm Napoleonics 'Republic to Empire' Rules. British Vs French

We had our first grapple with the 'Republic to Empire' rules at the Quorn Wargames Club (http://www.sonsofsimondemontfort.org.uk/) yesterday. I was feeling slightly daunted to begin with, this being my third introduction to a Napoleonic ruleset in just a few weeks - the previous being 'Napoleon' and 'General de Brigade'. I was actually quite surprised how quickly we began to pick it up. The point system for actions which was decided with the rolling of 4 average dice each turn made the system less rigid. So for example you could divide up 14 points with moving, changing formation, issuing new orders etc. Obviously there were still some restrictions (as experienced by Chris who voiced his frustration at not being able to unlimber his British 9lb cannons and fire at the Frenchies rapidly advancing up the hill towards him in the same turn - something only Horse Artillery and 6lb cannons could do). I also liked how swiftly we could make it across the board and begin to engage. Brilliant for a good size game that you could easily complete within 4-5 hours.

Another very good aspect was artillery fire. First shot on a new target was inflicted with a few minus points to the die roll, unlike in other games where you'd get plus points. It was deduced that the former was more realistic in that you'd have to range in the cannons with the first few wild shots, and then later increase your accuracy.

The second photo above shows another example of rash heroics (or "Raglan's Blunder") as the British cavalry decided to charge enemy artillery from the front. Accompanied by the immortal words "well, it might just work..." these chaps unfortunately were forced into a rout back to the medical tent to have the canister shot removed from their posterior.

It was an all round great evening, with lots of fun and a nice ruleset which deserves more testing and exploration in the future.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

French Line Artillery 12lb Cannons and Crew

Finished these yesterday, just in time for our first game of 'Republic to Empire' at Quorn Wargames Club. The crew and pieces are all Foundry Miniatures. 12lb cannons and personnel all late line artillery in full dress uniform. I did some digging around in a couple of books (primarily New Vanguard 066 - Napoleons Guns 1792-1815 (1) Field Artillery) and found some pictures I managed to work from. The one thing that slightly threw me was the single fringed eppaulette on the left shoulder of the officer figures. All the pictures I found displayed both eppaulettes - maybe someone could enlighten me on why there may be just one?
The paints I used were all vallejo, using Dark Prussian Blue for the main uniform. The wood on the gun carriage was painted in Olive Drab with the metal details picked out in black (as shown in the New Vanguard book). I also used Army Painter again, but this time using a brush rather than the dip method.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

15mm Napoleonic Battle ('General de Brigade')

The photographs above were taken from last night's battle at the Wargames Club using the 'General de Brigade' Rules for 15mm. It was a scenario taken from the rulebook and set during the Peninsular Campaign. Main feature was a huge hill with a horde of French perched on top and a smaller British force being tasked to hold them until reinforcements arrive later in the game and give them a bloody nose. The French were to wait until the weather conditions lifted (fog - lifted on turn 17 or on the roll of a 6 on d6) and then withdraw from the field.
The second picture shows the moment British skirmishers make contact with the French behind cover just on the crest. This particular British unit showed its mettle by later receiving fire from French muskets in the front and left flank, along with cannon on its right. A 'refuse flank order' had meant it couldn't step back and reform, but had to slug it out mercilessly. To their credit they made the French pay heavily, and only dispersed once they'd reached 50% casualties. An action that someone said would definitely have been recorded in regimental history!

The Foundry 12lb French cannons and crew are finally on the painting table. I'll post pictures after the weekend.....

Monday, 6 September 2010

French Line Infantry Completed.

Today I managed to complete my first unit of French Line Infantry (1807-1812). These are the plastic Victrix ones I started a while back. Time hasn't exactly been on my side, but I've usually found a couple of hours a night at least. Looking back I'd say having to assemble these does take patience and occasionally whilst cropping away at a growing pile of arms and knapsacks I began to wonder if I should've paid the extra and bought a metal army instead. Nevertheless, I'm really happy with the finished item. I've two boxes of Perry's cavalry (Hussars and Dragoons) plus three metal cannons from Foundry, so maybe I'll set to work on these next.
The local Wargames club (http://www.sonsofsimondemontfort.org.uk/) have hosted some great evenings over the last few weeks. Some standout battles were the 'Valley of Tears' (arab israeli war, using Battlefront rules) and one set during the English Civil War featuring Montrose Irish against Parliament forces using '1644' rules. Next week will feature 15mm Napoleonics (General De Brigade). I'll try and remember my camera this time!