Thursday, May 19, 2011

Imptus- Norse Irish vs Pre Fuedal Scots

I ran a 400 pts per side game for some our our DBA guys last night. Game was a draw due to running out of time but was perched precariously.

400 pts of Norse Irish + Vikings in 2 commands. Approximately
  • 2x Nobles
  • 6x Bonnacts
  • 2x highlanders
  • 2x Kerns
Viking allies
  • 2x veteran vikings
  • 5x regular
  • 1x skirmishers
  • 2x CM
  • 1x CL
  • 8 x FL infantry
  • 4x Thanes
  • 4x skirmishers
  • 8x Galwegians (in a separate command)
The Scots were based on a list on the Impetus forums.

Alas time ran out as the game was just getting interesting. The vikings were making progress on our left flank but the Thanes had just got into combat and driven back the highlanders and Irish Nobles and were threatening to break through the Irish centre. Meanwhile our right flank was gaining the upper hand vs the Bonnacts so it really could have swung either way.

The guys seemed to enjoy it and 400 pts per side definitely looked impressive!


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Welsh completed

Bases completed, just in time to be press ganged into service as part of my Pre-Feudal Scots vs Norse-Irish (400pts per side) game down at the club tomorrow night.

It took most of the night to base them- my new system taking a bit longer. Here is how I do it:
  1. Base the figures and superglue a stone from the driveway (or some barkchip- both work equally as well)
  2. Cover the base in a layer of PVA then sprinkle on some cat litter then dip in my mix of beach sand and a bit of fine cat litter. One covered add a bit more PVA in patches and then repeat the dipping in sand (makes the base less flat and more contoured- I like the look this extra step gives- and saves needing to use a base of permafilla before covering the base in sand).
  3. Sit bases in front of the fire for an hour or so (the joys of winter) to dry.
  4. Cover base in another layer of PVA- this time a mixture of 75% PVA about 25% water with a drop of dishwash detergent so the PVA sinks into the sand on the base (this step bonds the sand and PVA and creates a layer of PVA over the whole base and makes painting much, much easier)
  5. Again leave in front of the fire to dry.
  6. Undercoat black.
  7. Once paint is dry drybrush with dark brown then a light brown.
  8. Paint bigger rocks dark grey and highlight with a light grey (all basing paints are cheap test pots from the local DIY store)
  9. Add static grass, some clumps of Silflor autumn foliage and some Woodlands Scenics clump foliage.

It takes a while but I like the end result


Monday, May 16, 2011

WIP- Dark Ages Welsh

My current little work in progress- Dark Ages Welsh. I thought I'd experiment on using two colours only for the shields- not sure if I like it or not, but I can always paint over them if not 100% happy once completed. These guys can also be used as part of a Sub Roman British Army.

The figures are mainly from the Gripping beast Welsh range but also quite a few of the Crusader Scots thrown in for good measure.

Generic Skirmishers- I have two bases of Crusader Irish to do tomorrow night and I'll have finished all the skirmishers using the new base depth.


Sunday, May 15, 2011

More Southcon Musings

I've been working on my Dark Ages Welsh and have completed the first two bases but still have a few to go. I'll post some pictures when they are all done.

I'm also still trying to figure out what to take to Southcon. I discovered last week that it is only 2 hr rounds which I find a bit short. Richaard believes that it will encourage players to play faster (as if not finishng games is a problem down here- it isn't). However, my concern is that it will have two major negative impacts:

1. It will make a stalemate even more likely in an infantry vs infantry match up in a Fair Fight mission.

2. It will swing the balance in Defensive Battles too far towards the defender- it willl be far easier for a defender to slow the game down and so win by timing out- that extra half hour to prepare an assault can be critical and gives the attacker a decent chance to win. In 2 hours the attacker will need to have a lot of mobility- infantry heavy forces could agains truggle but so too could armour vs well constructed defesivve positions as there may not be time to exploit that all important breakthorugh.

So, Nick, Poochie and I are all looking at now taking different forces to take into account the shorter time limits. There are to my mind two ways of doing this.

1. Take light, fast, mobile forces such as plenty of light tanks and try to win quickly by overwhelming the enemy before their reinforcements can interfere- this is a good argument for the 21x T70 list- but alas I'm going Germans.

2. A reasaonably solid defensive list that will be hard to break or be driven off an objective in 2 hrs but which is also capable for attacking and taking objectives should it be forced to- and to my mind no German force is better suited to that syle of play than the Fallschrimjager- I find them to be one of my more robust forces on attack or defence and they tend to perform well for me.

So given the time limits here are a few ideas I'm now considering:

Option 1: Hungarian Tanks

2x T38 G 125
4x T38 G 255
3x III N 330
4x Marder II (allies) 360
2x Nimrod 145
3x Toldi Is 130
7x Assault Pioneers-Rifles (CV) 155

This is my latest idea- a light tank company to try to grab an objective quickly. I've never taken my Hungarians to a tournament so that would be a good reason to take them. The main reason to take this force is to field the very, very cool NIMRODS! Lots of tanks so not much mucking round each turn. The infantry are there as there could be fortifications and will definitely be a Not One Step Back table so they should be useful.

Option 2: Armoured PGs

Still my perferred force and am still looking at a few different options. However I am consideirng adding a platoon of luchs for a fast recon/objective grabbing element. One option I am seriously looking at is this:

2x HQ + P/Ks 80
7x Armoured PGs + P/K 235
7x Armoured PGs + P/K 235
3x Luchs 165
3x Marder II 270
2x Stugs 340
3x Panzerwerfers 175

It should be able to attack quickly if required and has plenty of flexibility.

Option 3: Fallschrimjager

A new twist on an old favourtie- usually I field a tiger with them and nebelwerfers. The HS 129s act as a stick forcing enemy to engage my tiger- it usually works well. This time round I thought that 4x marders would be a fun support option. Not my preferred army but it does include all the things I rate highly in the German arsenal- marders, panzerwerfers and HS 129s.

HQ 55
2x Stummelwerfers, 1x ATR 80
10x FJ + P/K 270
10x FJ + P/K 270
3x Pak 38 135
4x Marder II 360
3x Panzerwerfers 175
HS 129s 155


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Scots & Welsh

Last night I painted up some Crusader Minis Scottish Cavalry which will be used in both my Pre-Feudal Scots and Welsh armies.

Tonight's job was to rebase 8 stands of Dark Ages Skirmishers for various armies- they are a mixture of Gripping Beast and Crusader miniatures from various ranges (Crusaders- Irish & Scots; GB Vikings & Saxons) and will be used for a variety of forces. After seeing Jason and Jamie's 4cm deep bases for skirmishers I decided I liked that look better than the 5cm deep I was using as it gave a nice point of difference to the deeper bases for light and heavy foot and so tonight I got round to prising the figures off their bases, replacing their spears with metal Northstar ones and redoing the bases. A bit of a pain and wasted evening in some ways but they are done now so no longer on the to do list- although I still have a few bases worth to do I'm sure.

Next Projects
In the past few days I've ordered the miniatures for my Alan/Huns army- the light cavalry with be a mix of Gripping beast Early Saxons and Hun ranges, the foot are coming from Westwind Productions (Saxons) and the heavier cavalry (which will be 4 figures per base) are going to be the Westwind Arthurian Cavalry but with Saxon heads to give them a Visigothic look- I think they should look the part. The heavier cav will probably will double duty as a Sub Roman British army as well.

So it looks like the Syrians are on hold for the next wee while and I paint up some Dark Ages figures- I've the infantry for my Welsh army to complete next.


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Southcon 2011

Southcon is only a few weeks away so it’s time to get organised with my Flames of War stuff. As per usual Southcon is Midwar, Axis vs Allies and with one preset mission per table. It is also one of the best run events in the South Island- thanks to the efforts of former TAG member Richard Bell.

As per usual the Invercargill players will be there and as it is Axis vs Allies they all go axis or all go Allied so as to not play each other- a good move! This year they are all going Allied so Poochie and I (and hopefully Cal) will be playing Axis.

Over the past year or so I've enjoyed playing mechanised companies much more than my traditional infantry based forces and intend to continue the theme this year. I was pretty happy with my panzer grenadier force at the Worlds in February and they did much better than I expected- especially as I was told my list was one of the two worst (i.e least effective) on paper there- which was the point, I couldn't be arsed tweaking things and taking an "uber" force, I wanted something bog standard and fun- and it was certainly that. However, my panzer IIIs did struggle vs most armour so for Southcon I've decided to go for something with a bit more oopmh to support the armoured PGs- a tiger or a couple of panthers and force my opponent to consider my stuff rather than run and hide as I've had to do with the PGs the last two times I've run them at comps!

Coupled with that Poochie and I have a theme planned of "bring your mobile bathtub"- which really means bring two of the most over-costed and least effective weapons in the midwar German arsenal... GRILLES!

Over the years Grilles have fallen in price- however at 200 pts midwar they are still expensive for that they do.
Armour: 2/1/0
RoF 1, AT 13, FP 1+, bunker buster and bombardment

It looks reasonably good on paper but in my experience they tend to be slightly underwhelming on table (major understatement), hence they are rarely fielded! Actually when one compares them to 3x panzerwerfers with extra crew the 'werfers make my lists every time and the grilles don't, but not this time round.

So the key is what to support my armoured PGs and grilles with- its either tigers or panthers! Which makes for some very, very silly combinations!

I've finally cut it down to three possibles- one of which doesn't even have Grilles! I think list one is probably the best in terms of variety but the thought of grilles and panthers in one list has got to be one of the sillier forces to grace the table so is not being discounted either nd in fact I am quite warming to the idea. Anyway, here are the three contenders:

1 Armoured PGs + Tiger
2x HQ 70
7x Armoured PGs 230
7x Armoured PGs 230
2x Grille 200
3x Nebelwerfers 115
3x Marder II 270
1x Tiger 385

2 Armoured PGs + Panthers
2x HQ SMGs 70
1x ATR + Half track 30
7x Armoured PGs + P/K 235
7x Armoured PGs 230
3x Marder II 270
2x Panthers 550
3x Nebelwerfers 115

3 Armoured PGs + Panthers 2x HQ SMGs + P/Ks 80
7x Armoured PGs + P/K 235
7x Armoured PGs + P/K 235
2x Grilles 200
2x Panthers 550
3x Pak 38s 120
2x Nebelwerfers 80

Decisions, decisions...


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Impetus- Syrians vs First Crusaders

A very close run thing tonight, in the final dice roll of the final turn Kent saved the situation and scrambled a draw- he really struggled to come to terms with the Turkomen light horse and I almost pulled off a win- a great game as per usual.

My infantry command held my left flank, the more mobile Ghulums + Syrian commander the right.

As usual Kent deployed a wall of crusaders

My plan revolved around overwhelming the Turcopole Light Horse and wheeling round his flanks- with two of them vs three of my light horse it should be a doddle!

Yeah right! Two of my light horse were mown down by the crusader light horse so I sent my Ghulum archers and two of my superior light horse to help them out- this flank became a wheeling series of melees for the rest of the battle.

We both refused our other flanks and spent several turns ignoring each other- blue tokens denote units on opportunity.

The last remaining Turcopole feels outnumbered as the turkomen and ghulums close in for the kill.

Kent's main force wheels to face the threat on their flanks- can I get behind them and totally disrupt his battle plan?

Impetuous knights are forced to charge through the rough going. My n ghulums rain missile fire down onto them.

The turcopoles are right round the flank- and managed to evade whenever threatened.

The battle rages vs the knights- they take a lot of stopping!

With his left flank in trouble Kent advances his infantry towards my left flank- now things are going to get interesting. I need to be able to hold them whilst doing enough damage on the other flank to win the game.


At last I deal with those impetuous knights.

On my left flank I throw forward a unit of city militia to try to slow down the Crusader advance- it doesn't work.

Something I thought I'd never see- a buttock of death manoeuvre (ala DBA). Kent advanced the dismounted knights and so managed to get behind my light horse. He then threw in his footsergeants. The combat was a draw but my light horse had to break off and were cuahgt by the knights- sneaky! My on fault though, when I advanced to let loose at a crossbow unit I wasn't careful enough with the direction my troops were facing- a lesson learned.

I've now got numbers on my right flank but still need to finish off a few more units before my left flank implodes!

The situation is decidedly perilous- I throw all I can forward to try to stop the Crusaders- as has happened in each game they have fought the gaziz are quickly overwhelmed.

Cavalry charges uphill manage to do the trick destroying a couple of units of dismounted knights and sergeants.

Kent's infantry are also starting to come through the centre- both of us are now close to breaking. Can I finally finish the job?

I have now broken Kent's command but he has till the end of the turn to save the game- several of my units are badly mauled so it will be close. Foot knights charge my Ghulum general, only the throw of a 1 prevents him from being destroyed as he only had 2 hits left!

Kent is running out of options. He charges a Turkopole unit with some foot sergeants- if I evade I will end up directly in the path of the Crusader general so elect to fight. Neither of us causes a wound so the light horse have tor retreat straight into the path of the general who smashes them and so breaks my command to salvage a draw!

A really good game- the light cavalry was a real nightmare to face and Kent is threatening to add even more crossbows and bows to counter them.

I felt much happier with the balance of this force and felt it was much more competitive. I managed to destroy 25 points worth of Kent's command (just over half his 48 TVD) whilst losing 17 of my own so for once I was on the positive side of the casualties inflicted ledger.

I was also happy with the way my light horse and medium cavalry was combining to pick off units and so was starting to come to terms with how to play the force- more light horse is good and in this game they actually are a worthwhile troop type.

Next time, Kent wants to morph his force into a Norman army and take on the Vikings- or something similar- it might even be time for the Norse-Irish to come out to play.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

More Syrians

Work continues on the Syrian army. In the past few days I've painted up three bases of Perry Turkomens and rebased my old Glory ones. I much prefer the Perry's but the Old Glory figures aren't too bad so will continue to be used as well.

After my conversations with Jamie last week I decided to go back to my original basing ideas, so the light horse are now based with 3 figures per base and heavier cavalry with 4. Tonight I rebased the Ghulums so there are now four on the base. However, the Syrians will remain with three figures per base to help differentiate them from the heavier Ghulums.

The Turkomans- 6 bases all up.

The Ghulums- 3 bases but eventually this will grow to 6.

I also painted up the Emir's Court which will be used as part of my camp.

I'm hoping to give Kent a game tomorrow night, 400 points. The reconfigured Syrians now have more light horse and the army looks like this:

Command: Average (range 30U)

Command 1 (TVU= 16)
Commander: Fair (+2 leadership)

1x CM Syrian- General
2x CM Ghulum archers
3x CL Turcomans
1x S Archers

Command 2 (TVD= 18)
Commander: Poor (+1 leadership)
1x CM Ghulam Lancers- general
2x CM Syrians
3x CL Turcomans
3x FP Ahdath Militia
2x FL Gaziz

We will see how it fares tomorrow night. It still is pretty fragile due to its Discipline Value but I'm hoping that the Turkomen will be able to use their composite bows to harry the Crusaders knights and reduce them before my heavier cavalry is forced to engage- well that's the theory anyway.

Ideally I'd like to run a third command at at 500 points think I would, grouping all the infantry into one command.