Thursday, 28 June 2018

Some More TW&T! July 1944 AAR - Into The Woods!

Well we revisited TW&T again this fortnight using a scenario I found online. This is the second game of TW&T for our group but I have a couple of extra games up my sleeve. We wanted to really test the rules out.

Germans watching the Tommies advance...

Into the Valley
July 1944 an Allied offensive around Caen has splintered the German defences. The British are attempting to push forward to find gaps that they can exploit, whilst the thinly spread German second line is attempting to stand firm until reinforcements can be brought up...

Defending Germans
1 Big Man Level IV
1 Big Man Level III
1 Infantry Section with LMG Team
2 Tripod HMG Teams

British Attackers
2 Big Man Level IiI
2 Big Man Level II
1 Big Man Level I
3 Infantry Sections each with a LMG Team
1 Light Mortar Team

The objective was for the British to emerge from a wood cross a serene gentle upward country slope with minimal cover and clear the 6’ x 4’ table of Jerries. Easy!

The table ready for the British to arrive from the west, top right in the picture the German blinds can be seen behind the luxuriant hedges at the top of the slope...

Note - sorry tried to find the site again that listed this game without luck so can’t credit it!

The Game

The Germans were deployed with their Infantry Section covering the centre third of the table with a HMG Team on each flank set up with a pre-targeted firing lane ready to sweep their fronts.

All three of the British Sections came on in the centre of the table quickly losing their ‘blind’ status due to the open terrain. The Dummy Blinds played little part in foling the Germans what they were up too. Doing so inadvertently saved initially them the wrath of the Jerry HMG’s!

All started okay for the Poms and one section reach some dead ground on the slope for cover while another moved up alongside them. Then the section in cover deployed their Bren Team to the crest of their dead ground to harass the Germans and this is where everything turned nasty for the Brits!

For several turns in a row they became bogged down, twice aircraft buzzed the field of battle (random event) stopping any movement for the turn and on the others the card draws gave the Germans multiple actions while leaving the British stranded! During this time the German fire kept taking a steady toll of British. Several HMG jams did keep the game alive though.

Both the up front British sections lost their Bren teams and were stuck half way up the slope. The third section tried to suppress the Germans from the cover of a stone wall with little effect and then to top off their bad luck when their mortar came into play another random event occurred and a small structure caught fire and the wind placement sent smoke across the mortars line of sight requiring it to relocate!

The British players now got their Platoon leader up to the men stranded on the slope and he got them moving, unable to move directly forward they followed the dead ground to their left flank and ran straight into one of the HMG’s!

At this point the game was over for the British but as the HMG they faced had jammed and the grenades barrage they had launched against it was ineffective we continued for one more turn to test the close combat rules. Here too the Germans were successful by losing just two men to three. The Brits were broken at this point so it was time for coffee and the debrief!

Some Pictures...didn’t take too many as I was busy umpiring!

The first British section sprints to a patch of dead ground as the advance 'into the woods!'

Germans awaiting the British to attempt to get 'into the woods!'

Just as the British mortar support got into the show a blaze broke out in a derelict building and the smoke obscured their view!

With things going badly the British platoon leader inspired his men to swing to the left!

Straight into the sights of a German HMG Team...

Luckily for the Brits the German HMG jammed and a melee ensued...

The defeated British fled, here's a few with their Platoon Leader trying to stem the tide...'Come on lads lets give Jerry some curry!"

I like these rules and the guys general feedback was good. The turns flowed well and quickly. We covered all the infantry rules from grenades to close combat and found they worked well.  I think the secret to these rules is get your best Big men attached to your strongest units ASAP! This game though the British drew the short straw getting pretty bad card selections but that’s what the fog of war is about troops don’t always do what you want. We will use these rules again and plan on trying out the newer version Chain of Command at some point too!

Sunday, 10 June 2018

TGAA - NSW Government Commissioned Armoured Car 1932

NSW Police and Dignitaries inspecting the Prototype MB v1 Armoured car in the Sydney Botanic Gardens, May 1932.

With the outbreak of armed hostilities from May 20 The Great Antipodean Adventure turned nasty and violence was rampant on the streets of Sydney New South Wales. With fighting iescalating many factions starting improvising various Armoured vehicles. Little did they know the Provisional New South Wales Government saw 'the cards on the table’ as soon as the first demonstrators filled the streets after the dismissal of the Lang Government and they had secretly placed an order for Armoured Cars for the State Police Force!

Provisional Premier Bertram Stevens knew that Federal Government assistance would not be immediate and his State based ‘Defence Forces’ would be hard pressed to fight armed insurrectionists. Therefore he decided in conjunction with his Cabinet to commission an Armoured Vehicle that would allow the NSW Police to maintain peace in the streets of the fine city of Sydney. The Police Department were to oversee the project. They approached the motor body building firm of Diskon & Molyneux, in the suburb of Bexley on May 14 and paid for twelve Armoured Cars to be delivered within a period of eight weeks with the first to be available as soon as the 24th of May! 

Diskon & Molyneux who had been building car bodies for imported Amercian Packard chassis gladly accepted the contract even though they had not the slightest inkling on designing an Armoured Car or how they could meet the tight deadlines. Their Manager though was a man of action and he promoted his best engineer, Bert Hinkler to produce a rear engined chassis using a Packard Light Eight one they had in stock. He also approached the noted Art Deco architect Emil Sodersten to draw up a design for the vehicle. The Diskon & Molyneux paint shop were set to finish the interior in flat white enamel while the exterior was coated in a fine full gloss British Green with Satin Black turret and wheel cover features.

The two men worked together day and night and their brilliance birthed the the curvaceous Diskon & Molyneux Armoured Vehicle Mark I which went from design to prototype in the space of a mere ten days!

The NSW Police were soon to test the first MB v1 Armoured Car in the heat of battle...

It was a rather unsuccessful design in the end and quickly superseded with only nine being delivered and an improved version replacing it. The completed vehicles soldiered on through the duration of the insurrection often being captured serviced by their new owners and being sent back into the fray, sometimes to be captured a second or third time!

The Vehicle

The modified chassis was shorter than the civilian equivalent and reinforced. The bodywork was all welded and the curved plating was layered sections supplied by a local boilermaker. One side door was included for the crew. The manually rotated turret contained four apertures; one each for the gun, the commander, the gunner and the driver. The low body meant the drivers head was in the turret space which meant that while I motion the turret was required to face forward. The driver location resulted in a few issues the least of which included the need for an efficient catcher for spent rounds lest they hit them when the vehicle was firing in its forward arc!

Length 15’ 9”
Width 5’ 6”
Height 9’ 6”
Motor 320 cu in Straight Eight with 110hp
Gearbox 3speed manual
Top Speed 24mph
Crew 3
Armament 1 x Vickers HMG or 1 x QF 3-pounder 

The Model

Okay this model like most of my others is mainly sheet and rod styrene. I am also using this time some wheels and a HMG from Eureaka Miniatures, a Foreground building window frame, a bottle cap and some 1/35 Pz V parts!

Here's the first task assembling the floor and side you'll note a couple of braces to keep it square. The curved parts will be the wheel covers and the axles are lolly pop sticks with paperclip wire...

The new A/C parts with its oppostion in the background!

The sides and base are 1mm styrene for the curved end plates I glued and secured 0.5mm styrene sheet into place

Once the curved ends were completely dry I glued on the hull top and added the hull details; a door, the rear deck grill, a fire extinguisher, a headlight and an exhaust pipe...

The turret is a roll on deodorant bottle cap!

A lick of paint and the NSW Government forces have an Armoured car ready for action!

I like how this finished up! I still have one more Armoured Car to build for TGAA scenarios and after our Little Wars Melbourne ROAD TRIP and a stop at the Nhill RAAF Base Museum I am going to base it on the first ever Australian built Armoured Car! Also I really need to get back to my unfinished VSF projects though! I have a VSF scenario ready to play and a cool building to construct which will probably become the new secret lair of Dr Von Hades this too is thanks to Little Wars and the new Twisted game range of products!

Sunday, 20 May 2018

Song of Drums and Shakos AAR #2

Trotted out the Song of Drums and Shakos rules and my Perry 1/56 figures for some more Napoleonic skirmishing!

Blurb for the game, the character names matched ours I did this to get Dave’s Great Great Great Great Grandfather who served on wellington's staff in 1815 into the game...

The Supply Train
June 1815

Belgium in the summer of 1815 was in a state of anxiety. A large portion of the populace looked to France where Napoleons return excited in them with the prospect of reunification with that great country whilst the majority feared the return of the ‘Ogre’ would result in their subjugation!

Soldiers from the Coalition partners soon found themselves based in the peaceful Belgian countryside in readiness for their great offensive which would finally rid Europe of Napoleon…

We go to the 16th of June 1815 near the Brussels/Nevilles Road...

Given a temporary command of a crucial supply train, Captain Neudegg found himself daydreaming as he trudged along a dusty Belgian road on that cool June morning surrounded by his small detachment of redcoatsLittle did he know that the rising sun that warmed his face not only brought on the day but the French army! It was Sergeant Harrison on noticing movement in the distance roared ‘Oi Frenchies!’ The Captain was stung into action this was not going to be the leisurely stroll he expected…

Lieutenant Williams a grin on face and his shako at a jaunty angle pointed out to second in command Sergeant Coppelois the rag tag column of redcoats approaching them. He leaned close to his NCO and mumbled his orders in an outrageous French accent to the Sergeant. Taking in his task Coppelois sneered in that typical French manner, sucked hard on his half smoked Gitanes and then discarding it scurried off rally his charges. Minutes latter a force of battle hardened Voltigeurs and Fusiliers set off to beset the unsuspecting British!
Count Neudegg
Sergeant Harrison (Rifleman)
6 Line Infantry
4 Riflemen
1 Civilian teamster leading the supply column

Lieutenant Williams 
Sergeant Coppelois
7  Voltigeurs
Game length
15 Turns

Victory Conditions
To win the British must exit the supply train of all four mules from the opposite road edge to which they start
To win te french must kill /wound 50% off the British force and stop the supply train exiting the board edge

Special Rules
The supply train mules move first each turn
The supply train always moves 2 short moves is it moves and must follow the road
The teamster must stay adjacent to the mules and stay on the road
The teamster has a C 1 combat value and has no firearm
If the teamster is killed 2 British figures must replace him and while they engage in leading the supply train they can not engage in any type of combat


I'll let the pictures tell the story!

 Captain Neudegg and his column escorting the vital supply train

Captain Williams cajoles his Fusiliers into action

French Sergeant Coppelios and his Voltigeurs

The British Line Infantry stay on the road by the supply train while the Riflemen head off cross country albeit slowly

 The battlefield!

The French Fusiliers move quickly to secure the stone walls that dominates the road on which the British supply column must continue

The British rRflemen dawdle while the French light troops move rapidly and engage the British on the road

Coppelios Voltigeurs open fire on the British and draw first blood, their uncannily accurate shooting knock out two Redcoats and force three to hit the ground! Little did anyone know this event really decided the game the British were delayed at this point for four turns and came under fire from both French sections!
 Captain William's section secure the vital stone wall

The supply train continues down the road after a delay while the British Infantry duke it out with Coppelios Voltigeurs

Captain Williams French Fusiliers loose off a volley and a Redcoat in the distance is dropped

Finally the British Riflemen come into play and helping the line troops put the French light infantry to flight, here they are seen withdrawing. The riflemen ended up inflicting over 50% losses on the Voltigeurs after which they were rendered ineffective for the duration of the game

The French at the wall in turn inflicted more losses on the British Infantry and they too struggled with morale and turned tail and headed toward the rear. The Riflemen tried a desperate final lunge to distract the French and allow the supply train to slip past them...

...they failed and the slow supply column was ripe for the picking!

Captain Neudegg his Redcoats retreating an all looking hopeless aided the Riflemen and charged the French Infantry, he was promptly cut down!

To complete the British defeat a French Infantryman killed the teamster, the supply train was in French hands

A British defeat, they suffered 8 casualties and the teamster while the same number of Frenchmen were felled. The Voltigeurs and Redcoats both with over 50% losses were struggling as their morale collapsed.

The game showed that volley fire when you can employ it is the way to go!

These are my favourite Napoleonic skirmish rules! Planning to get a four player game with much larger forces on the table soon!

Thanks for checking the AAR out!

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Longstreet 4 Player Campaign Game 2 - Battle of Cow Run

So Game 2 of this four player Longstreet Campaign sees Dave and I win the scouting role and electing to defend. The two scenarios combined together are the Railway Embankment and the Outflanking.

I line up my Tennessee men along the railway with plans to place my guns on a nearby hill supported by cavalry and my reinforcements. Dave defends the tree line and a stone wall. Our plan is to hold the first attack and then counter charge the Bluebellies. The Yankee tactic is to blast the railway embankment with artillery while charging the Rebel right.

Here’s our forces...

Alan - Colonel Firefly from Massachusetts (European Service & Artillery Officer &
Friend in the State House) 44 Bases
5th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry S R 5 Bases
9th Massachusetts Infantry S R 6 Bases
14th Massachusetts Infantry E R 8 Bases
21st Massachusetts Infantry E R 10 Bases
4th Boston Light Cavalry E R 6 Bases
2nd US Cavalry E R 5 Bases
4th Battery Light Artillery 1 x 6lbr 1 x Howitzer
7th Auxilary Art Coy 2 x Howitzer

Dave - Colonel Leghorn from Alabama (Scout & Cavalry Officer & Indian Wars) 36 Bases
3rd Alabama Infantry E R 7 Bases + Hero
1st Alabama Infantry S R 7 Bases
14th Alabama Infantry S R 4 Bases
2nd Alabama Infantry E R 8 Bases
1st Alabama Volunteer Cavalry S R 6 Bases
1st Battalion Alabama Artillery 1 x 6lbr 1 x Howitzer
2nd Battalion Alabama Artillery 2 x 6lbr

Peter - Colonel Clampett from Tennessee (Drillmaster & Artillery Officer & Personal Physician) 38 Bases
14th Tennessee Infantry E R 8 Bases + Hero
7th Tennessee Infantry E R 7 Bases
Walkers Legion E R 8 Bases
2/22 Tennessee Cavalry S R 4 Bases
2nd Tennessee Cavalry E R 6 Bases
Baxters Artillery Company I Batt  2 x 6lbr 1 x Howitzer
Baxters Artillery Company II Batt 1 x Nap 1 x LR

Stu - Colonel Zook from New York (Political Savvy & Indian Wars) 40 Bases
52nd New York Infantry German Ranger or Sigel Rifles S R 3 Bases
53rd New York Infantry D'Epinuil Zouaves S V 6 Bases + Hero 'old Reliables'
57th New York Infantry National Guard Rifles E R 5 + Hero
66th New York Infantry Governors Guard E R 10 Bases
140th Pennsylvania Infantry E R 10 Bases
2nd New York Volunteer Cavalry S R 4 Bases
Harris Light Battery B 1st New York Light Artillery 1 x 6lbr 1 x Howitzer

Let the game begin!

Colonel Leghorn won the scouting roll and chose to defend. The Rebels were well placed behind a railway embankment and a stone wall, in woods and with a nicely placed hill in their centre the perfect spot for a battery or two.The Yankees to the left below just lined up. Colonel Zook's plan was to attack the Rebel right and centre and place all their artillery on the long hill on their own right.

Turn two and the Yankees move forward and the Rebs place their guns on CowHill on the centre of the battlefield, the creek in the foreground near the railway line is Cow Run...

The Rebel right in the foreground they are deploying toward the centre of the battlefield to link up with Cow Hill and their armies left. In the background wave after wave of Colonel Firefly's enthusiastic Yankees advance covered by the hill and fields...

Turn three the Confederates stay to the plan and deploy two batteries onto Cow Hill, beyond the road Yankee artillery can be seen on the move while their infantry advance...

Overview of the battlefield on Turn four the Yankees to the left the Confederates to the right, the 6mm figures look good manoeuvring about the table...

The Yankee right one battery on the long hill is already in action two more are about to unlimber. The measuring stick on the left is the range of musketry and Zook's Yankees are carefully staying out of the range of the defenders...

Meanwhile the Yankee left is moving into charge range. The cover helps them and the Rebel infantry fire is of limited effectiveness...

Turn five and the Yankees bring the gun crews on Cow Hill under fire wiping out a battery as they kill two bases of guns, the return artillery fire is poor even though colonel Clampett is on the spot to direct the gunners

Turns six to ten for some reason I forgot to take many pictures! Perhaps I was thrown off when I split one beer and caused another froth up...not a good night! anyway during these turns the Yankee left launched two successful charges and Colonel Firefly's boys in blue got the better of the Rebs. Colonel Foghorn Leghorn wasn't helped rolling a SIX when the 'They Couldn't Hit an Elephant...' card was played against him on turn eight and he lost a whole turn.
The Union right tried charging up Cow Hill and splitting the Rebel army but they were unlucky as Colonel Clampett's reserve Regiment, Walkers legion arrived in the nick of time to assist the gunners.

The Rebs of Colonel Leghorn straightening their line around turn ten...

The Yankee right turn nine near the top left the 140th Pennsylvania Infantry Regiment can be seen after an unsuccessful assault on Cow Hill...

Last turn, eleven and the game ends in a Confederate Victory, the Yankee's thinking discretion is the better part of valour decided to withdraw from the field of conflict and lick their wounds leaving the ground in Rebel hands. Maybe their commanders feared a Rell Yell inspired Confederate counter attack?

 Overall view of the Rebel left at the end of game...

Cows Hill turn 11 the gunners were lucky the reserve Rebel infantry were able to deploy themselves to be art on any Yankee charge! Lesson learned artillery by itself is not impregnable against large units of infantry armed with rifled muskets...

Three pictures of the Yankee left and Rebel right were still in good shape and Colonels Firefly and Foghorn were squaring up against each other as the battle ended...

Battle Summary:
Break Point was 37 Bases

USA 20 Bases
CSA 9 Bases

Epic Points:
Alan 5 Campaign Total 11
Dave 4 Campaign Total 13
Pete 4 Campaign Total 9
Stu 2 Campaign Total 5

Campaign Game 3 looks interesting as our forces develop. There are now a few Veteran Regiments but more importantly some units have been whittled down to only a few bases, one being down to just two! These will prove brittle in battle and we're all waiting until 1863 when we can start to create Provisional Regiments!

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

The Big Gun AAR - The Great Antipodean Adventure

The Background

Sunday the 20th of May 1932 and the All for Australia Party's 17th Volunteer Rifle Company entered Beaconsfield Park with the intention of recovering the old 18lber Gun kept there, little did they know the Anglican's of the 2nd Sydney Regulars where attempting the same mission... 

Captain Bruce Beatty signals his men forward along William Street adjacent to the Beaconsfield Park in search of heavy ordinance known to be there...

Battle:                         The Gun
Location:                     Sydney NSW
Date:                            20th May 1932
Weather:                     Fine Still Mid Afternoon Visibility 48”
Notes:                         Orders for both sides that can’t be changed:
                                     ‘seize the gun in the park and return with it’
The Forces

All For Australia Party 17th Volunteer Rifle Company.
Ford 'Randwick' Armoured Car with 5 Volleys
Crossley Truck
Unit ID. Name
Officer Grade
Unit Initiative
 Command Section

 Section 1
 Section 2
Section 3 

Anglican League 2nd Sydney Regulars
Crossley Armoured Car with 3 Volleys
Unit ID. Name
Officer Grade
Unit Initiative
 Command Section

Section 1

 Section 2

Section 3

The Game...AAR

I'm going to let the pictures tell the tale here with some inspiring captions!

Turn one and both side enter in line abreast formation and head straight for their prize, the 18lber Gun!

 Turn two and the antagonists close to point blank range...the initiative on Turn three would be telling... 

Turn three and even at close range as both sides are moving and their are no elite or regulars in the line and their fire is surprisingly ineffective!

 Turn four and the now stationary troops start to hit the mark, amidst the hail of lead the Anglicans hitch the vital Gun up to their Ford truck...

A period picture of the Randwick Armoued Car in was a frightening beast the Anglican survivors later it is seen scoring telling hits on the Anglican truck with its HMG, it hit the motor and front tyres, during the barrage the driver to fled!

 After stalling for a turn due to a random event the Anglicans Crossley Armoured Car races around the All for Australia boys flank...

The Anglicans getting the worst of the fire fight make a last ditch attempt to recovery the gun unhitching it from the damaged truck...they would push it away from the action. A call went up '"The Lord's with us lads!" the only thing for sure was many of these lads would soon be meeting their Lord!

The Anglican truck Driver Bruce Jones after fleeing his vehicle which was riddled by bullets from the Randwick Armoured Car is in the foreground of this picture, a random event delayed his rally attempt as he settled down for a brew or two purely for medicinal reasons of course!!!!!!!

Sergeant Bruce Anthony on the right of the All for Australia Party's force egged his men on against the Anglicans Crossley, "Come on lads lets show this Tin Can what our Molotov Cocktail can do...pass me the matches...who brought the matches errr..." the attacked failed!

The Randwick Armoured Car meanwhile circled around the Anglican line and mowed down their Commander Colonel Bruce Brady and his entourage with its last volley...drunk Driver Bruce Jones standing in the line of fire survived and next turn he reboarded his damaged Ford truck and limped away from the action in it! Hidden by the trees in the picture the 17th Volunteer Rifles score hit after hit decimating the Anglicans lines...

The Anglican Cossley Armoured Car retires its munitions spent and shocked at the daring if ineffective Molotov Cocktail attack!

A period picture of the carnage, Captain Bruce Beatty Commanding the 17th Volunteer Rifle Company commented to his Aide "Crickey I haven't seen butchery like this since we took on the Box Heads while taking the Hindenberg Line during the Great isn't it!"

Overview at the end of when we called the game during Turn 9 with three to go the Anglican Leagues force was obliterated it was a forgone conclusion that the All for Australia Party's  men were guaranteed the recovery of the 18lber Gun!

Another good run through of the rules. We are going to tweak some of the Modifiers for fire and Morale. Next game we really need to wind back our units Morale levels, in this game three sections simply stood firm even with over 50% casualties and were just cut down in place. Interestingly even though our units were within charging range no one wanted to risk a melee. Next game will be the real thing as we think we've got A World Aflame to a sweet spot! I'll write up a summary of our customisations soon in a separate post.

Thanks for looking! I've got a Longstreet AAR I still need to write up!