Thursday, 24 December 2015

Merry Christmas

It's that time of year again when all the preparation comes together, works stops and the festivities begin. Hopefully Santa is bringing me some books on the Franco Prussian war and the Risorgimento and lots of X Wing and Armada goodies. We're not hosting this year as the house is a building site, but he found me at the new address last year so tracking me down at my Mum's should be a doddle. I may even catch up with my AARs and get them posted!

As part of our Christmas fun I've booked us in to see the new Star Wars which I'm really looking forward to.

Right time to check the builders are finishing off before chasing the cats with my wife to get them in to their boxes for their holiday at Mums'. I hope they don't shred her furniture.

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas.

Monday, 30 November 2015

Conwy Wargames Club Nov game - Plancenoit 1815

Mel and Dave arranged the club's nod to this year being the anniversary of Waterloo.  Using their 15mm collections and the General De Brigade rules the game was taken from one in the scenario book 2.

The Mission
French hold the village without the Guard being committed.
Tactical Victory - French hold 2 of the 3 areas of Plancenoit and the Old Guard is not committed.
Glorious Victory - French hold all 3 sections of Plancenoit and only 1 Young Guard Brigade committed.

Tactical Victory - hold 2 sections of Plancenoit and the Old Guard have not been committed.
Victory - hold all of Plancenoit
Glorious Victory - old all of the village and all the Guard is committed.

Orders of Battle
CiC Baron Simmer no ADCs

19th Division Baron Simmer
Bellair Brigade  4 battalions
Jamin Brigade 1 battalion, skirmishers
Div Artillery 1 x 8pdr foot battery
12th Chasers cavalry

Young Guard Duhesme
Chartrand Brigade 4 battalions and 1 x 6pdr battery
Michel Brigade 4 battalions and 1 x 6pdr battery

Old Guard Morand
1/2 Grenadiers
1/2 Chasseurs

Add caption

CiC Blucher plus 1 ADC

Bulow's IV Corps
Hiller's Brigade 6 Battalions, 1 x 6pdr battery, skirmishers
Ryssel's Brigade 9 Battalions, 1 x 6pdr battery, skirmishers
Reserve Artillery 1 x 12pdr battery
Reserve Cavalry 3rd Landwehr Cavalry

Pirch's II Corps 9 battalions, skirmishers, 1 x battery of 6pdrs, 11th Hussars

Blucher personally directed the attacks on Placenoit, any light wound and he'll become a poor commander and can no longer inspire the troops
The French start being commanded by Baron Simmer, once the Young Guard come on Duhesme will take over. Simmer will become an ADC at this point with one other.

The Prussian 16th Brigade start on the high ground east of Plancenoit and the French 19th Division starts in and around Plancenoit.

If Bellair's brigade is broken or the Prussians occupy all the 3 urban sections of Plancenoit the Young Guard arrives on the road. The Old Guard appears if the Prussians have all of Plancenoit and the Young Guard has already been committed.

We agreed that each urban section could hold a unit and a gun. The church section provides a +3 melee modifier.

Special rules
Game length 24 - we only managed 9

The Game

Blucher behind Hiller's brigade.

All of Hillers brigade facing Plancenoit. I commanded this brigade and Pete commanded my artillery and all other artillery that arrived and Tony Ryssel's brigade

My best troops

The French right wing commanded by Dickie

French centre commanded by Dickie. All the troops in front of the buildings are actually inside defending.

French left wing commanded by Gaz

First move

The Prussian artillery of the central ridge ineffectively open fire and roll a double 1 thus discovering they've misplaced the ammo wagon. Drat!

French troops move up. 

Prussians keep advancing

Prussian 14th Brigade arrived ready to start next turn

Blucher cheers on Ryssel's men

The reserve artillery and cavalry arrive. The Prussians focus their attacks on the weaker sections of Plancenoit

Both sides exchange artillery and musket fire

Ryssel's brigade advances followed by the Prussian reserve artillery

The Prussian reserve Landwehr cavalry march to help the left attack

The Prussian left attack reaches charge range

Hillers brigade charges as the French shore up their centre and Ryssel's brigade closes in 

Bad dice. The 1st Silesian regiment recalls in disarray from attacking the centre

More bad dice and a battalion of the 15th regiment is hurled back on the left. Dickie's French however are having marvellous dice. They are down 50% and still in the fight.

Tony's aka Ryssel only manages to get 1 battalion of Landwehr to charge home and pushed the French back from the church only to be undone by horrendous dice and Ryssel's brigade breaks. This picture shows the Landwehr retreating
We then remembered the 11th infantry was part of the same brigade and retreated them as well. Blucher was on the left of the battle and would take 2 moves to reach Ryssel, and as long as they rallied (and they would) it would take them 4 turns to get back in the fight. We were on turn 9 at the end of the day having played for 3 hours, out of the scheduled 24 turns. We'd been slow setting up as the majority of us playing were unfamiliar with the rules and some not familiar with the period. So we called it a day realising that even with another hours play the French will still have won even if my Prussians did occupy 1 section of Plancenoit.

A resounding French victory and Marshal batons all round. Ignoring the fact the game needed another 15 turns to get a true result we'd stopped play at a point the French could claim the Young Guard and the part of the old Guard committed would be available for the attack by the Guards on Wellington.

I liked the rules, I still prefer Black Powder with which I think we'd have had a quicker game. Black Powder has less paperwork and movement is much quicker. I did like the fact that the larger batteries in General De Brigade took up space that restricted movement as they did historically. Regardless of which rules we'd used we definitely needed a full day to play this scenario. Ryssels brigade would have rallied and attacked again with the Prussian II corps which arrived on turn 9 which we didn't play. By roughly turn 14 Plancenoit should have fallen and the Young Guard would need to arrive, and their presence would be felt by around turn 18. I definitely would like to lay this scenario again.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Conwy Wargames Club games for 2016

The last game has been played for 2015 whose AAR will follow shortly. Where has the time gone? The next game will now be the last Sunday in January 2016.

The games lined up so far are:

Jan 31st   American War of Independence by Pete M using Black Powder rules and 28mm figures
Feb 28th  WW2 Russian front by Pete N using 20mm figures and rules to be decided.
March 27th (this happens to be Easter Sunday so we need to check the venue is open) X Wing by me
March/April WW2 Eastern Front 1944 day game by Pete M using Battle Group rules and 20mm figures.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Preparing for Plancenoit 1815

While still horrendously behind writing up AAR's (I have 7 to do), lots of progress on renovating the house has been made.  I however have found time to start reading up on the General de Brigade rules. I haven't played these for years, preferring Black Powder. In fairness the General De Brigade I only played 2 games didn't get the hang of the rules and my opponent and I weren't familiar with them.When Black Powder came along they fitted my mind set like a glove. I am therefore looking forward to this Sunday's Conwy Wargames Club game recreating the battle of Plancenoit 1815, an important sub section of the battle of Waterloo. I'll be playing with General de Brigade veterans so I'll see the rules in all there glory.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Conwy Wargames Club 15mm Sassanids vs Middle Imperial Rome

This month Dave put on a Hail Caesar middle Imperial Roman vs Sassanid game using the scenario 'Go meek in to the desert' supplied in the main rule set.


The Romans were defending an oasis with 3 divisions on board. The cavalry division had to dice to come on from turn 2. The Sassanids started off table and had to dice to arrive from turn 1. Their objective was to oust the Roman invaders from the vital water resource.


We used a 6ft x 4ft board with the oasis marked by palm trees in the middle. We didn't have a hill or tower as in the scenario.


Cavalry Division
2 x Heavy Cavalry
1 x Light Cavalry
1 x Camelry
Left wing Division
2 x Auxillaries pilum
1 x Auxillary archers
1 x javelin skirmishers
1 x scorpion
Centre Division
2 x Legionary
1 x Auxillary archers
1 x scorpion
Rightwing Division
2 x Legionary
1 x Auxillary pilum

Heavy Cavalry Division
2 x Heavy cavalry
1 x cataphracts
Light Cavalry Division
2 x Light Cavalry
Infantry Division
3 x Elephants
4 x Infantry
2 x skirmishers with bow

The Game
Gaz's leftwing division occupies the oasis

My centre and right wing 

The Romans start on the board minus their cavalry. At this stage regardless of what you can see there are no Sassanids on the board

Sassanid light cavalry appear and take hits from the scorpion

Poor Sassanid command dice allow the Romans time to form a battle line

Roman right wing looking good

Left wing equally happy in the oasis

Close up of Roman left wing

Sassanid light cavalry division advances

Roman left wing still facing no opposition so archers and scorpion begin to angle to target Mel's Sassanid light cavalry

The Roman cavalry roll their dice successfully and appear

Finally more Sassanids arrive in the form of Tony's infantry and elephants

In the distance having struggled to arrive on board Pete is now waiting patiently to get the right dice to move the Sassanid Heavy Cavalry division.

The Roman cavalry move off to intercept their Sassanid counterparts

The Roman battle line made up of the left wing, centre and right wing divisions refuse their left flank anchored on the oasis and begin to move towards the Sassanids

The Sassanids watch glumly the slow Roman envelopment, but they could still punch through this thin line

Inexperience with the rules leads to an unfortunate Sassanid muddle as the infantry set off before the cavalry have moved out of the way and the Umpire has to step in. No one is made to be disordered but the infantry movement is stalled

The Sassanid heavy cavalry still awaiting successful orders
The Romans are now growing very confident

At last the Sassanid heavies are on the move but sadly they lose their commander whose left turns up early and he has to depart - just as well otherwise he would see his division trot into a semi circle of waiting Romans

At last the Sassanid shake themselves out and begin their attack. Their light cavalry make way for the infantry and ride across  the Roman line suffering numerous traversing shots shaking a unit but the division survives. Now the infantry are unmasked the Romans charge home not waiting to be peppered by the Sassanid arrows. 1 legionary unit is shaken but the Romans win the combat and the Sassanids are pushed back. The elephants luckily don't panic and even luckier don't disorder the follow up infantry they retreat through. In the second round of combat the Romans win again and Sassanid infantry unit is destroyed. At this point we'd run out of time.

The Sassanids were certainly not a spent force with no divisions broken and the Roman right wing had taken a hammering, but the Romans were certainly in a better position tactically. It was decided by all that the Romans had won this time.