Friday 30 March 2012

Battling the beastly Boers - FLW game report - Part 2

Back to the wide open spaces of Middle England now.  Having (at last!) played Funny Little Wars as it's author intended - outside - I can strongly recommend the practice.  Setting up the terrain was followed by a chat about toys and a pleasant lunch.  We then set about the game itself, pausing during the afternoon for tea and cake.  All jolly civilised!
Forbodian cavalry move up.  These are Italeri Mamelukes and look quite effective in the open air.
These chaps are the Brigadier, his orderly and standard bearer - the latter (centre) is evidently rather camera shy.
It soon emerged that the Forbodian column which reached the town contained the King himself.  He immediately took position in the castle's highest tower.
King Boris III explains his cunning plan to a pair of rather bored looking guards.  If he is the 'King of the castle', then somewhere there must be.....
....some 'dirty rascals!'.  Careful study of the front rank will reveal that Boer 'frightfulness' included the conscription of women!
The enemy command group and heavy artillery.  Happily, this gun's opening shot landed in one of the Boer infantry units.
A long-range artillery duel in progress on the left.
Forbodian infantry and guns deploy near the central wood.  A bit too close together as it turned out...
Forbodian Jagers and Guards, along with a field gun soon secured the town - due to (or despite) the personal supervision of the King.
The Forbodian cavalry spot an opportunity to get stuck into their opposite numbers.
The cavalry charge went quite well - eliminating the enemy cavalry, but the appearance of that machine gun put paid to the advance!
The positions shortly before we drew a veil over the proceedings.  By this time the Boer gunnery had improved considerably and the Forbodians paid dearly for having placed two artillery limbers so close together.  A shell hit one and........well, you can imagine the rest.
A rather atmospheric shot of the survivors.

We concluded that while the Boers had the run of much of the field, their infantry units were too weak to allow an assault on the town (by now, somewhat inevitably christened 'Ladysmith'...), and an honourable draw was declared.

Wednesday 28 March 2012

Battling the beastly Boers - FLW game report - Part 1

On Friday I was privileged to play FLW with the game's author, PW in his well-manicured garden.  After my arrival at noon, we set out some terrain (all from P's collection) and agreed forces.  I had taken the Forbodian Army, while mine host selected (from the many options open to him) a Boer-type force - 'Army Orange'.
King Boris had at his disposal three infantry battalions and a cavalry regiment, along with three gun batteries - 1 each of light, medium and heavy.  The Boers (who were apparently all on holiday in neighbouring Ruritania...) fielded three smaller infantry units, one of cavalry and several guns and new-fangled machine guns.
We agreed that the objectives would be to take and hold both the farm and town.

This photo gives an idea of the size of the playing area!
The Forbodian Army begins it's advance.
The infantry on the Forbidian left were soon spotted by Boer scouts.
The scouts in question - complete with signal flags.
The Forbodian right - Jagers and a field gun.
Forbodian cavalry and a light gun soon reached the central wood.
The Forbodian gunners seemed happy to be in the open air.
Enemy light gun (left) and machine gun.  Frightful!
Enemy cavalry taking up position ahead of the Forbodian left.
The Forbodian 'side' of the battlefield, with everyone now visible.
The delightful Mrs W had created this farmyard.  If the size of that chicken is anything to go by then Genetic Modifications are alive and well in Ruritania!

Tuesday 27 March 2012

Sukhoi Su-15F

On the modelling table at the moment is this pointy beastie.  It is one of the (very cheap!) 1/72 PM kits I picked up at the Telford IPMS show late last year and I am not building it with any particular use in mind.  So far it is going together quite well, and although the parts fit is not 100%, my use of filler has been limited to the nose wheel bay - the door panels supplied just don't fit.
Nearly a foot of Cold War pointyness.
Just look at the size of those missiles!
I haven't decided on a colour scheme as yet.  The box art isn't hugely inspiring, but overall 'metal' seems to have been the most common finish.

Monday 26 March 2012

An Inconclusive Scrap - FLW game report - part 2

Part 2 of this encounter saw Lloyd's artillery consultant (me!) opening fire.  Sadly hits were few and far between.
My gun (Britains) and Lloyd's gunners (Imex)

Lloyd's general (for it is he) cheers on his troops.

Lloyd's infantry disperse into the village and woods.

These chaps had been ordered to take and hold the village.  Job done!
Meanwhile the Vulgarian infantry had moved up - as their gunners kept up a steady barrage.

Lloyd's infantry were targeted by both the Vulgarian guns.  This photo shows the uneven terrain (left) which helped create the second 'friendly fire' incident of the game - when a shell fired by Steve's 18in howitzer ricocheted off it...into a Vulgarian battalion where it inflicted 40% casualties!

The photo which sums up the game - Steve at the controls of the mighty howitzer.
The Vulgarian left advanced but were being whittled away by enemy gunners as the game drew to a close.  An honourable draw was declared!

Sunday 25 March 2012

An Inconclusive Scrap - Funny Little Wars game report - part 1

Last Wednesday night the Sheffield club was treated to another FLW game.  Played on a 12x6 foot table, Lloyd's newly painted Army Black (aided by some Forbodian gunners and staff officers) faced Martin's Vulgarians - with some staff and artillery provided by Steve, who also commanded.  Martin and I acted as 'technical advisers' to Steve and Lloyd respectively, and a number of other club members were allocated roles.

Lloyd's army deployed for action.  It consisted of 2 infantry battalions, a cavalry regiment, 3 machine guns and two field guns.
Lloyd opted for an early cavalry thrust down the right flank.

Steve brought along (and was desperate to use) his newly-repainted 18-inch Howitzer.  This was the second most ridiculous toy used in the game...

The enemy had two infantry battalions, a cavalry regiment, a field gun and a heavy gun.

The game in progress
Vulgarian air support soon arrived in the shape of Steve's 1/32 scale Wright Flyer - which had been subjected to some field modifications...
The Flyer soon appeared above the front line - it is at the top of this alarmingly tall stand!
The Flyer's pilot - generously supplied with grenades - most ungentlemanly!
The pilot consults his instruments - and regrets not buying that £99 SatNav
After a successful opening barrage from Martin's 4.7 which did great damage to Lloyd's cavalry, the next shot bounced off the base of the aircraft stand and hit the Flyer!
A short film clip of the 4.7 firing at the cavalry is here: Firing

Saturday 24 March 2012

A question of scale

This is one of the photos I took for the new edition of Air War Games, which I thought I'd share with you. I wanted to easily demonstrate the differences between some popular scales and hit upon this. The Bf 110 is the only aircraft I have in so many scales!

Friday 23 March 2012

Persian cavalry

These chaps are ancient in every sense of the word!  I remember owning some of these Hinchliffe cavalrymen in the '70s and so was pleased to bag them very cheaply at a recent show.  The horses were sourced from the large box of equine lead which I rescued from JR's attic last year and include castings from several manufacturers, including Hinchliffe, Essex and Warrior.  Spears were cut from florist's wire.  All have been 'treated' to my usual basic paintwork with a finishing coat of Ronseal.  The bases are 8x6cm MDF.