Welcome to the Blog of a Skirmish wargamer! I hope you enjoy reading it!

All my rule sets are freely downloadable from our club website's Downloads page

If you need to contact me my E-Mail address is richardbradley5@gmail.com

Saturday, 27 February 2016

A Spanish interlude?

Today, I was lucky enough to get a game of Sails of Glory - so many people had dropped out of the planned Wars of the Roses game, there was only Ian and me left...and he needed the practice to get more familiar with the game system.

For today's game, we chose 2 Royal Navy 74's, I had H.M.S. Superb...

...while Ian had H.M.S. Goliath.

We used the points system to determine the enemy force and got 2 Spanish ships, Argonauta, a 74, and Sirena, a frigate. These would be run by the AI.

The Spanish started, heading as close to the wind as possible without 'Going in Irons', with Argonauta in the lead.
 We left a lot of space behind for Sirena as she went faster than Argonauta, and we didn't want her ramming the 74's stern!
 On the other side, I led with Superb, followed by Ian's Goliath. On Ian's suggestion, we went to full sail to try and cross the Spanish 'T'.
We, too, sailed as close to the wind as we could, though our ships were not as able as the Spanish to head upwind!
We were still far apart, so still had time to get the advantage of the wind. 
 The Spanish were falling behind in our race to get upwind, would our plan work? 
We had a quick break here to chat to Andy, and Steve (right  in pic below) 
We were getting closer now, would both sides continue on course, or break and attack?  
 The situation as we got within 2 rulers distance of each other.  
We were going to get the wind advantage! 
 Argonauta turned into the wind and fired at Goliath.
 Superb got a close range shot which caused a leak and broke a mast! We exchanged musketry, and even though out gunned I came off best!
 Argonauta was damaged, but not critically.  
 The water damage could be pumped out, if she had the crew, and time!
 Taken aback, Goliath raked her decks!
As she limped away, I got a lucky stern rake on her, that set her afire, but little else! 
Sirena had turned with Argonauta, and now turned downwind, avoiding us. 
 Argonauta was in a sorry state.
 As we turned to follow the wounded Argonauta, Sirena turned quickly, and eschewing a front broadside on Superb, raked Goliath, hitting a mast!
My answering broadside damaged the frigate a bit!  (Goliath was unable to attack as she was fixing her mast damage.)
 But Sirena was still battle-worthy!
Argonauta was getting her fires, leaks and damage under control at last. 
 Sirena bravely exchanged musketry with both R.N. ships, but came off worst.
Her crew status was getting worrying! 
Argonauta was half wrecked... 
My Superb was only scratched... 
Goliath, now repaired 
 Back to the battle...both sides reloaded as fast as they could!
 Argonauta was heading back towards us.
 Would she be able to help the outgunned Sirena?
 Goliath got a stern rake on her...
 Sirena lost the musket duel again...
The brave little ship was forced to strike her colours! 
 Argonauta, too late to save Sirena, got caught by a crushing broadside by Superb! - it started a fire and a leak, broke a mast and lots of box damage.
I even got some musket play on her crew...
 She could not deal with such catastrophic damage.... 
 ...and at the next turn start, struck her colours too! 
On our side, Goliath was not badly damaged... 
....Superb was minimally damaged... 
We put prize crews on the 2 Spaniards and helped make them seaworthy. 
And sailed home rejoicing!

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Ask-ari, and you shall receive?

Today, we returned to doing a Colonial skirmish using my newly revamped solo system!

To give the rules a good test, we used Lawrence's natives, with lots of spearmen and groups of Musketeers and archers. We used his Askaris to face them too.

The scenario was a simple one, a group of Askaris are landed to 'persuade' the local warlord to cease raiding his loyal (to the Crown!) neighbours.

The table from the point the British arrive.
A view from the native side. 
I was given command, with 2 burly bodyguards, and a squad of Askaris.
Lawrence used the other khaki squad, we were armed with breech loaded rifles.
Phil, (and later Stephen), got blue coated Askaris with Enfield muzzle loaders. 
The natives would of course be run by the solo system! We randomly deployed them on their half of the table.
Today, we welcomed Stephen (man with a baguette!), visiting from the North Shields club!
A group of 20 spearmen and 10 musketeers deployed on their right. 
The main body deployed in the centre... 
2 groups of archers held their left. 
 We deployed in a rough line on the far side of the table.
As yet, we could see nothing. 
The natives advanced rapidly towards our position. 
We delayed the start of the bodyguard warriors for a turn to give a distance between the first wave and themselves. 
 On the native left, the archers stealthily infiltrated forward through the woods.
 Lawrence's and my Askaris saw the right flanking spearmen and opened fire...
...Even at this range, several natives fell dead.
 The main body was still out of sight, but advancing.
The musketeers supporting the right hand spears now appeared through the trees to support their attack. 
 The spearmen they supported were suffering against our combined fire.
The survivors paused, then raced forward, desperate to come to blows with us.
...until, following a final volley, the surviving spearmen broke and ran.
On the native left meanwhile, the archers exited the woods.
 Stephen and Phil's Askaris began to shoot at them.
 The archers were, however, only slightly stung by the fire.
 The second archer unit now joined them, combining their shooting against Stephen's Askaris.
 Back in the centre, the routing spearmen slowed the advance of the spearmen in the middle of the table. 
 The flanking musketeers moved forward to replace them
 They came under fire from my Askaris, and halted.
 Would we be able to stop this lot though!
 We now had Phil's Askaris shooting in support of Lawrences and my Askaris. 
 We managed to slow the advance of the massed natives, for now. 
 Stephen, meanwhile, was fighting both units of native archers. 
He managed to kill several of them... 
...but took casualties in return he could ill afford. 
On our left, one of the native musketeers...
 ...killed one of my Askaris. 
Phil now had to move his men to support Stephen, leaving Lawrence and me to face the spear swarm alone! 
Phil arrived just in time, as more of Stephen's men had been wounded by arrows. 
The native archers were being very effective! 
Another spear block attacked Lawrence's Askaris. 
I was still engaging the musketeers, seeing them as the greater threat! 
 A good volley from Lawrences men shook the overconfident spearmen!
Halted, they were struck by another volley!
...and the survivors retreated in confusion.
My Askaris were still under heavy musket fire.
2 more of my men were hit!
Stephen and Phil were still engaging the archers.
 The second unit was hit by a concentrated volley. 
 The archers, though, held their ground and shot at Stephen's unit again.
 They had had enough, and retreated towards the rear. 
Back in the centre, the peasant spearmen retreated...
...or ran.   
 Phil managed to scatter the archers facing him, at last! 
 ..Though he lost a man in the process.
 In the centre, the Bodyguard spearmen now braved our fire. 
Moving at great speed, they raced into contact. 
 My men got a point blank volley...
One of my British officer's  bodyguard Askaris now fired a random shot...
...and killed the Native leader!
(Amusingly, my 2 bodyguard Askaris had 5 turns in a row when they hit and killed 2 natives! - Dice, eh?)
The charging spearmen killed 2 of Lawrence's men, including his NCO. 
My men now disgracefully retreated rather than fight... fortunately, Phil turned the flank of the spearmen...
 ...and broke them!
 My Askaris now sheepishly returned to the line...now it was safe!
That was a REALLY close game, the British line almost broke.

At least it showed the new rules are a massive improvement, and make the natives a real threat. 
I think we are happy with them now and will get them on our club website as soon as Andy can do it.
If you want to try them -- They are now on our club website! LINK