Wednesday 29 February 2012

Guise 1914

I played thought this Op14 game over the course of several evenings.  The total playing time was probably about two hours.  The photo above shows the initial setup - north (and the Germans) are to the top. 
The scenario saw two German corps from Bulow's 2 Army attempting to push aside the unsupported (or so they thought!) French X Corps.  The French - actually amounting to two corps - were heading west, the head of the column being just short of Sains (just to the left of centre on the photo).  Part of a further French corps was on the western edge of the table.
This was the first outing for my 1914 French 6mm troops.
The field grey hordes crossing the river and heading south.
More Germans crossing the river south of Guise.
I decided to give my veterans a rest, so the Germans I used came from a batch I picked up at Triples last year.
An overview of the battlefield as the opposing forces come into contact.
The French X Corps occupies the area of Guise.  Most of the toys are Irregular, although this '75 is from Heroics & Ros.
French troops crest the ridge and are confronted with a plain full of Germans.
The battle for Sains develops - the Germans launch the first attacks while the French frantically try to deploy.
Soon two full corps opposed each other at Sains.
Further east the French had the benefit of a ridge to defend.
X Corps artillery engages the enemy.
Another overview - showing the armies largely engaged.
Op14 uses a card activation system - in 1914 drawing a spade means troops must attack adjacent enemy - as in the case of these Germans.
The French corps at Sains soon began to teeter on the brink of exhaustion.
Once the German artillery was deployed the attacks intensified.
The French on the right are being bombarded - the brigade has lost 50% of it's original four stands!
The French at Sains had also suffered and had been trying to dig in when they became exhausted.
The new management of Sains.
German corps HQ and artillery.
The second German corps HQ.
German casualties were by now mounting.
The Germans at Sains by no had come under pressure from a fresh French division approaching from the west.
The Germans at Sains had to face two enemy formations.
The French further east were saved only by the Germans running out of steam.
French army HQ.  These chaps are actually 1870 figures by Baccus which I picked up (painted) on Ebay.
The French gunners get their own back - they needed to roll '3' or less on each of the two dice, so the target German brigade dropped from 75% to 25% strength!
The French from the west soon began to lose momentum.
An overview of the battle's latter stages.
German air recce arrived too late to make any difference.
The high-tech digital display I used as a turn counter.
By now both sides were largely worn out, although the French still had a couple of divisions in decent condition.  It is likely that the Germans would withdraw to the north.  Perhaps Paris has been saved?
I hope to run this game again - with real players - next month.

Tuesday 28 February 2012

Jahra, 1990

Putting together the recent series of posts on my 1990/91 Gulf War toys prompted me to search for photos of of games involving them.  Of the three scenarios I have run (Jahra, Khafji and Kuwait Airport), I only have pictures of the first, which I suppose gives me an excuse to do the others again...

On to Jahra.  I ran this game at least twice - in January 2007 - with my own NATO Brigade Commander rules and then-new Hexon terrain.  I'll let the photos and captions tell the story, which opens as the invading Iraqi forces trundle into Kuwait along the major road which bypassed the town of Jahra.
Iraqi armoured forces move round and into Jahra - at 1 km per hex this was a fairly sizable town.  It was garrisoned only by a few rather nervous Kuwaiti policemen...
Elements of a Kuwaiti brigade deploy from their desert base.  The BRDM at the highway junction is a recce platoon moving ahead of the main Iraqi force.
Some of the Kuwaitis managed to cross the highway, hoping to stem the Iraqi advance.
The Kuwaitis had the best of the opening rounds - the white crosses are casualty markers (each company-sized stand takes two hits to 'kill' it), and the lead Iraqi tank battalion has suffered a morale crisis (the yellow marker).
Meanwhile, the Kuwaiti police - on their home turf - were working round the Iraqi flank.
Soon the opposing forces had fought each other to a standstill - with casualties and morale failures all round.
Sadly for the local boys, there were lots more Iraqis following on.  Numbers soon began to tell...
Eventually the Iraqi artillery arrived - on tank transporters.
The fresh waves of invaders soon pushed the Kuwaitis out of central Jahra.
Several Iraqi battalions were shattered during the intense fighting for Jahra...
...but they pressed on as fresh units were thrown in.
By now the Iraqis had control of the highway.
Iraqi artillery deploying to support their tanks and infantry.
The Kuwati last stand - literally.  Well, not quite, as the brigade's HQ and artillery slipped away to the west into the desert.

Another milestone reached!

The magic number of 100,000 page views was achieved during (in UK time) the night of 24/25 February 2012.  This means that on average each post has been viewed more than 200 times!  Coming so soon after attracting 100 followers  this is very encouraging.  I again thank all of you who take the time to look at my blog - it is, as I said in my New Year Message, an integral part of my wargaming world.
A milestone of a different type!  What can I say - I needed a suitable picture. 

Monday 27 February 2012

Kuwaiti Mechanised Brigade

My Kuwaiti brigade was built for a specific game nearly six years ago.  Photos of the actual game will follow soon (as I have recently rediscovered them!), but for the moment here are some rather better photos of the toys.
In 1990 Kuwait had new Yugoslav-built M-84 tanks (a development of the T-72) on order to replace some rather elderly Chieftains and M-60s.  In the event they weren't actually delivered until the army was regrouping in Saudi Arabia.  But what the hell.  I used the very lovely C in C model of the T-80.
Another view of the tank battalion.  I am quite pleased with the paintwork. 
The infantry battalion.  This was in the process of re-equipping with BMP-2, so my unit has 2 companies of the latter, with 1 still in M-113.  The AT battery has M-901.  All GHQ models.  I think the infantry are GHQ's US 'Nam era chaps.
Another view of the infantry btl.  The combination of an oil wash and drybrushing really brings out the detail on these GHQ castings.  For the benefit of readers less familiar with 6mm toys, the bases are my usual 30x40mm. 
The brigade HQ (C in C M-577) and artillery controller (GHQ Landrover 90).
Did someone mention artillery?  GHQ M-109A1 and C in C M-35 lorry.
The artillery battery again.  The random infantryman was added to give the stand a bit of 'life'.