Saturday, 29 July 2017

L'Art de la Guerre (ADLG): C'est manifique!


Tim's Polybian Legion face off against Seleucids - think this is an ex-Chasseur army

Yes, yes, yes, yes!

It's been months since I've had the time to blog, let alone game or paint, and filled with contracts, travel, report writing, book editing, and family. Not to mention cold, wet, and cold - did I mention the cold? One morning my car was so frozen, I couldn't open the doors - its cold!

Elephants and pike await the Romans... again!

A few weeks back as work was dying down, Tim from our local wargames group asked if I wanted a game and offered to take me through L'Art de la Guerre; lets face it, the replacement for DBM(M) and FoG; and as this seems to be a set of rules growing in popularity locally, I enthusiastically agreed.

I then had a second introductory game yesterday using my Seleucids against his Polybians (see photos), but lets just focus on the game that followed.

I played Tim's son Justin in the third game. Neither of us own the rules, nor have read them properly and it was our first game after only two introductory games with Tim.

The legion begins its sneaky maneuvers to split the pike blocks.

This is the amazing thing that happened, after set up and only two turns, and given we had the two page reference sheet to hand, neither of us had need of the rulebook or further guidance. That's how straightforward, simple, and well designed this ruleset is.

Remarkable and must be the first time in twenty years of gaming that when some weird event or occurrence has cropped up in an early game, it hasn't warranted precious minutes thumbing through a rulebook. ADLG is like the synthesis of DBx and FoG. Like after years of committed struggle of development for DBx and then its antithesis FoG, out from the clouds of evolution emerged ADLG.

Pike command gets ready to face the Princeps. I finally got to use the pike and command  I painted earlier this year.

I'm sure we missed some things, like remembering some pike and my Xystophoroi were Elite and I can see there's a lot more subtelty waiting to be uncovered, but the basics are so well designed that it didn't really matter.

I winge and moan constantly about what I want from a ruleset, given the brain power my work requires - oh woe is me, my life is so hard... not really - but I never thought there'd be an ancient/medieval set of rules which was straightforward enough to want to play on a Friday evening, talking bollocks with mates, while eating junk food and drinking coke.

Two pike commands face off against the Princeps command and Hastati/Triarii command.

I remember when FoG came out I thought it was going to be the bees knees for ancient/medieval gaming, then I played it. '++' minus '--', makes a positive, carry the '+', unless its impact troops on a Tuesday... what? Arrgh! Who won that #@^*& combat?

I remember staring open mouthed at a DBM tournament as the rules guiding movement were explained to me yet again, 'you can't do that, because the distance from the front corner, divided by the isosceles, across the zone of control, while holding your tongue in the right position, means that a troops expanding from a column, can't move across the face of an enemy element, until 4PM on a Thursday, unless the angle of attack is less than 30 degrees and all elements end directly facing at least one enemy element...' - WTF? I just like playing with toy soldiers!

Also, having been burned by FoG and having foolishly bought the majority of supplements, like DBA 3.0, all of the army lists you could feasibly want, are included in the ADLG rulebook.

Xystophoroi doing what they do well, smashing lighter enemy cavalry.

The only bad thing I can remotely come up with is that you don't need a lot of figures for an army - which really is a positive. You'll need figures somewhere in the number between DBA and DBM/FoG, which means most of my figures will stay in their boxes for ADLG - but then that's what Hail Caesar or WAB is for (does anyone actually play WAB anymore?).

ADLG is a nice surprise and though I'm a little late getting into it, I can see why everyone is raving about it and the armies behave pretty well on the battle field as well.


Unsupported elephants against lighter, javelin armed, troops - say goodbye to the elephants!

In one game my massive and long pike block was bisected and outmaneuvered by legionaries, my elephants were overcome in rough ground by medium javelinmen, and in another my unsupported elephants were eventually overcome by a line of determined legionaries while my Xystophoroi mowed down Roman cavalry. Nice.

So ADLG is a good ruleset and to be fair, while derivative, it sits squarely on the shoulders of its predesseors and it does that really well.

The pike block systematically and deftly turned, game over man!

I've just ordered a copy and am looking forward to many more games in the future, but to be fair if someone still wants a quick game of DBA 3.0, I'll be up for that as well because its the perfection of that line of games. As for FoG, well at least in all the supplements I've got lots of good reference material in the photos and Osprey pictures.

Monday, 24 April 2017

Sudan: Updated Posts


So for some reason the photos from posts carried over from the old blog must have been removed and been only linked by this blog. Have updated each of the effected Sudan posts with correct photos.

Sudan: Cameron Highlanders
Sudan: New South Wales Regiment
Sudan: KRRC & Royal Marines
Sudan: Indian Brigade
Sudan: Hadendowa
Sudan: Ansar
Sudan: Old Ansar Units and the Joker
Sudan 1000: The Count So Far... Have shot past this count in the past year and now heading to Sudan 1500... for 1500 figures on a table at once...


Saturday, 8 April 2017

AWI: Continental Light Infantry


Finished off another couple of auxiliary units for BP: Rebellion! This time its some light infantry for the New England brigade.


Figures are from Strelets M071 British Light Infantry in Egypt 1801 with slight modifications to fit AWI, as per the Lee's Legion unit finished previously. They look a bit rough compared to the Italeri figures, despite re-working several times.


This time the uniform is based on two sources, the Baccus website and its 1779 Continental Regulations, and the Uniforms of the American Revolution website and its 1782 Light Infantry plate.


In this colour scheme these could be LI units for the New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut Regiments. Yes I'm aware there were no battles after 1781, although the Brits stayed until 1783.

They've been mounted so that they can form: 2 x small BP units, 1 x standard BP unit, or 1x small BP unit and a small dismounted unit for the 2nd Continental Dragoons finished previously, should the need arise.


This finishes off the 'New England' brigade.

Next up a couple of Virginia Continental Artillery crews, and Lee's and the 3rd Continental Dragoons.

Friday, 31 March 2017

AWI: Maryland Battalion 1776


A bump in the painting roster due to a delay in painting supplies, has brought forward the completion of next continental battalion, the Maryland Battalion circa 1776.


The inspiration for this unit came from the cover and double-page plate in the Osprey Campaign title - New York 1776, which depicts the 'Maryland 400' battalion charging at Gowanus. The BP Supplement supports this, describing them in 1776 as 'hunting shirts died tan' with officers 'red coats faced buff'.


The figures are well proportioned and detailed, and are from the Accurate 7201 American Militia/IMEX 511 George Washington's Army set. While not exactly dressed in hunting 'shirts', they look to be dressed in hunting 'coats' - close enough I say.


One out of the three boxes I bought had figures as per the IMEX listing, the other two had figures as per the Accurate listing, the drummer is a spare one from the Italeri 6060 set.


All have been mounted on 3mm bases as opposed to card, as - like their Accurate/IMEX counterparts - they are about a head shorter than figures from other manufacturers of this period.


The battalion is a large BP unit that can be reduced back to standard, producing an additional command stand also. It is said that Lord Stirling (Maj. Gen. Alexander) personally lead the battalion in the action at Gowanus, hence the inclusion of the mounted officer (from the Revell 2572 set).


This completes the line units for the Maryland/Virginia brigade and next up is the raft of light infantry and dragoons I've prepped while waiting for detail brushes, to complete the New England and Maryland/Virginia BP brigades.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Blood Bowl: Balls!


Having had an excellent introduction game of the recently re-released Blood Bowl from Games Workshop - thanks Simon!, using none other than a painted Chaos team I picked up for less than $20, years ago, I got a little enthusiastic about it.

It was a fun game that had several layers of game play and was a typically excellent GW specialist game.

Noticing the 'embryonic state' of the plastic parts of the sets we were using and knowing Simon is busy with babies... with the thought of the further games he'd be arranging for us, I offered to paint his balls...

... after the giggling and semi-awkward silence had settled down, I got to work.

First up some Orc balls I think... I did't realise Orcs had balls...


I went for two standard 'dirty-look' Orc balls made out of leather and a hume-skinned ball for a bit of fun.


Next some of Simon's Skaven balls... I think that's warp fire? Luckily I found I actually had five shades of the appropriate green paint! But it did pose the question...


... if I have a Skaven ball in one hand and a Skaven ball in another hand, what do I have?


A rather large Skaven... ah thank you and goodnight.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

AWI: 3rd Continental Artillery Crew


A few more auxiliary troops for the Continentals in the form of some crew to man a couple of the cannons painted previously.

Have again taken the uniform from what's listed in the BP Rebellion supplement, for this organisation of artillery: black coats, red facings and lining, buff shortclothes.


The supplement summarises that Massachusetts raised the 3rd Continental Artillery circa 1779, so these guys have been included in the New England brigade.


The figures are from the IMEX 555 British Artillery set. Why? Because this set was originally produced in 1/32 scale as American artillery. For some reason IMEX swapped their sets around when producing 1/72 versions of them. After hours upon hours of reviewing contemporary pictures of these guys, I agreed with the PSR reviews and will swap the two sets back - not that you can really tell at this scale :)


Unfortunately the plastic is quite brittle and the sponge guy lost his sponge along the way, and is now holding what is commonly referred to as a 'stick' - I'll convert something at some stage to replace it. Apart from that the figures are well detailed and easy to paint.

American gunner sights down the barrel - is it any wonder I'm single I ask myself?

But with the average finish of these guys comes the realisation that, while a good workman never blames his tools, my detail brushes are well used - and I think have come into contact with superglue :o - I'm out of white undercoat, and have been scraping the bottom of my Citadel White Scar for the last week.

Lancer miniatures' and Revell plastic gun.
Its time for a supply run to my local Games Workshop!

AWI: 2nd Continental Dragoons


The first auxiliary troops for this period have come off the painting table, a small BP unit of the 2nd Continental Dragoons.

These guys have come from the Revell 02573 Austrian Dragoons set and I've done some head conversions using the heads from spare light infantry out of the A Call To Arms 65 British Infantry 1775 set.


The uniform reference this time began out of the Rebellion! BP supplement but was finalised on the Baccus website, hence the helmet conversions - which I admit was a last minute decision. I've gone for Bay horses - standard and buckskin - and a single gray for the commander.


Not my best effort and had to spend a lot of time on painting some of the white details on as the moulding from 1992 - when the set was first produced - was not the greatest.


The 1775 flag is off the net (after the following search on Google images "awi 2nd continental dragoons flag") and after a quick confirmation from the Historical Flags of Our Ancestors website to make sure it was correct... wish I'd scrolled down as there is a flag for this unit for the later part of the war, no matter.


Next up - will the fun never stop!? - an artillery crew.