Sunday, 18 February 2018

Paphlagonia vs Latium - a To the Strongest intro game

My plan to try and get more games in in 2018 had taken a knock over the past few weeks or so, due to having to deal with Local Government, which at times felt like trying to get blood out of a stone whilst swimming through treacle. Salvation came in the form of my good friend and gaming chum Keith Flint, who was keen to have a go at 'To the Strongest' ruleset. 

So a pleasant drive through the Cotswolds saw me arrive with the table already set up and some figures on the table. In advance I had knocked up some basic army lists based upon Keith's 'Trimsos' armies, nothing too fancy, so that we could focus on the game mechanics and simply having a good time. Once again it was a pleasure to be able to play a game with Keith's wonderful 28mm figures that are certainly colourful and full of character.

For the first game, we simply chose a good mix of units, including Elephants, Chariots (both light and heavy), Cataphracts, Hoplites etc, in fact anything that grabbed our eye. This game took a while to get going, as neither of us could hit a barn door with our missile troops and our weapons must have been made of rubber. In the end my troops (Latium) prevailed, but the game could have gone either way. 

In the second game, we selected units appropriate to Keith's army lists, so I got the Elephants, whilst Keith had some rather tasty looking Phalanxes and Chariots. This game was brief and bloody, with the cards certainly favouring my Latium troops, as Keith's centre and left flank collapsed in short order. Fortunately he was unable to take advantage of his numerical superiority on his right flank before the aforementioned collapse. Still it was a fun game.

Given that these were test games and very much aimed at getting Keith au fait with the game mechanics, I didn't take any notes. However I did find time to take some pics which will hopefully give you an idea of how things unfolded.



Both armies arrayed for battle, with my Latium troops closest to the camera.

The Paphlagonian Elephants and Phalanxes look somewhat daunting.

The core of the Latium army, their infantry.

The armies advance, with the Latium archers supporting the right flank.

Some failed activation cards led to a broken Latium line.

In contrast the ordered Paphlagonian line.

The infantry clash.

They may only be javelin armed skirmishers, but I loved the shields. Sadly they don't make anything like this in 10mm, so maybe some conversions will have to be done...

The centres clash whilst both sides skirmishers try and gain control of the flanks.

From a Latium point of view, the Paphlagonian centre looks too strong.

However looks can be deceptive.

Nelly feeling somewhat vulnerable.

With the centre gone, the Paphlagonian right flank had no option but to withdraw.

With Game 2 underway, the action happened thick and fast. The Latium right flank quickly gained ascendancy and turned in on the Paphlagonian centre.

This time the Latium 'Nelly' felt confident and proved her worth on the battlefield.

The action continued thick and fast, with both sides losing units, but the Latium troops were marginally on top.

The end for Paphlagonia, as their army had vanish as quickly as Summer mist.

The Latium troops looking for someone to fight.

The Latium army in complete control of the battlefield.



Post Game Thoughts
Both games proved to be very enjoyable affairs, despite the second game being a tad more one sided. Not having played 'To the Strongest' for sometime, I was unsure as to whether I would still enjoy them. In fact I need not have worried. In fact the opposite as it re-confirmed that they have become my current Ancients & Medieval' rules of choice. As always, a few thoughts on the game, the rules and Ancients gaming in general;


  • I need to create a better QRS sheet than the one contained in the book. this is mainly to allow me to easily remember things such as +1 card to be played on Flank Attacks, a -1 Save to units being attacked in the Flank etc. I'm sure this would become second nature with lots of playing, but with erratic outings of the rules it will simply make things easier.
  • A more detailed roster for each army will make game play much quicker, such as adding in Attack and Save details, for similar reasons outlined above.
  • TtS certainly gives a fun and relatively quick game, compared to the likes of 'Hail Caesar!' I no longer think of it as a grid based game, but a game that really allows me to concentrate on my tactics.
  • For my next game I will give the ammunition supply rules a go, now that I have, hopefully, got the game basics nailed down. I'm intrigued to see how this affects the use of Light Infantry.
  • I really need to make some Army camps for both of my planned ImagiAncients armies, so plenty of opportunity for some creativity.
  • The same could be said for adding a few more Generals to my armies, as well as the one use Heroic ones. Time to have a browse of the Pendraken catalogue as well as my lead pile.
  • Of late I have been making some terrain in the limited time I have had, to which I need to add a baseboard. I have some ideas on how to make it work for a grid based game but not look too grid like. Some tests are required to see whether my ideas work or not. I also need to bear in mind that this board will be used with the forthcoming 'For King & Parliament' rules that are due for release at Salute.
  • I thought the rules worked well for units such as Chariots and Elephants, that can in other rules feel a bit clunky or unsure as to what they are trying to achieve. They also work well for ImagiAncients armies as it is so easy to select troops and create balanced armies due to the points cost and Victory Points system.

So I'm looking forward to trying to get in some more games in the near future, using my Viking and Saxon armies. A campaign of some sort would be nice, but I don't want to run before I can walk.


Friday, 12 January 2018

Rebels & Patriots - forthcoming rules from Osprey

Over the Xmas break last year, Michael Leck of 'The Pikemen's Lament' fame, dropped me a line to see if I would be interested in helping playtest some new rules that he and Dan Mersey were developing. Well, does the Pope pray? Of course I would!!! Having helped out on the aforementioned rules as well as 'Lion Rampant', I knew that they would be rules that I would enjoy playing. 

So out came my wooden blocks, some printed labels and away I went, having great fun trying out scenarios, troops types etc. However, I had to keep stumm, as the rules development was not in the public domain. But last week Dan and Michael were able to talk about these rules and below is the 'press release' from their respective websites:


Rebels and Patriots – Wargaming Rules for North America: Colonies to Civil War

We are glad to announce that we (Daniel Mersey and Michael Leck) are once again teaming up with Osprey Games to bring you a new set of wargaming rules!

Rebels and Patriots will be a set of easy to learn and fast-moving miniature wargaming rules offering you the chance to lead small armies of soldiers across the North American continent in the late eighteenth to mid-nineteenth centuries. The rules are written with a focus at conflicts on the North American continent from The French and Indian War (1754–1763), through The American War of Independence (1775-1783), War of 1812 (1812–1815), Texas Revolution (1835-1836), Mexican–American War (1846-1848), up to the American Civil War (1861-1865).

Rebels and Patriots will help you to refight company-sized skirmishes, ambushes, escort scenarios, and other tasks performed by a small company of soldiers rather than a full army. Game play is intentionally easy and cinematic, and your success is driven by the quality of the officers leading your company: the rules play up the feeling of adventure, where Heroic Officers lead their men to glory…

As with our previous rules, we’ve focused on the overall ‘feel’ and ‘flow’ of the game, rather than worrying ourselves about the minutiae of historical simulation. Our design goal has been to write a set of broad-brushstroke rules that depict the Horse and Musket era by combining elements of our Pike and Shot wargaming rules The Pikeman´s Lament and Dan´s colonial wargaming rules The Men Who Would Be Kings. The aim of the game is to roll some dice and move some models in a Horse and Musket battle game inspired by American history between 1754 and 1865, enjoying yourself as you do so.

More than anything else, we once again wanted to work together to create miniatures game for an interesting period of the history that is easy to play and enjoyably fun. We hope you will agree that we’ve done so: when Rebels and Patriots is released in early 2019, you’ll be able to judge this for yourself!


So far I've had a lot of fun with these, even just using my versatile wooden blocks. Now I like Dan and Michael's rules as I just get were they are coming from. Not everyone does, but then what ruleset does everyone like? Naturally my aim is to replace my blocks with figures, but I'm trying to be good and finish off my forces for use with 'The Pikemen's Lament' before moving onto a new project. At least I'm getting games in though which is great.

Period wise I'm torn between the American War of Independence, the Fenian Raids or the American Civil War, as Pendraken do lovely figures for all 3 periods. Given that I already have loads of AWI figures, it is likely to be this conflict that wins out. Maybe the odd bit of rebasing will be required as well as a few figure purchases, but nothing too major, famous last words.

Even though the rules are for the wars in the Americas, I can't see why I couldn't use them for some Imagi-Nations gaming in Europe, straight out of the tin as it were. The only downside with Europe is that there are less figure poses to choose from from the Pendraken ranges. Again I have loads of figures for the Seven Years War and the 1860s period, so will have to check them out to see if they float my boat.

Monday, 1 January 2018

End of Year Review 2017

As is usual at this time of year, many Bloggers look back at their year and take stock of things. I find it an interesting exercise for my gaming activities, as well as enjoying reading how other gamers viewed their year. From my perspective 2017 seemed to fly by. Not sure why, but that's how it felt. It also felt a funny year in terms of my wargaming, with no-coherent feel to it, if there ever can be one for a wargames butterfly like myself. As in previous years, I've broadly broken things down into sections, with some comments at the end. So without further ado.....

Rules Bought
The Pikeman's Lament (free due to being a playtester)
Battlegroup Blitzkreig supplement
BKCIII (free for being a play tester)
Hordes of the Things 2.1 
1871 Franco-Prussian War fast play rules by Bruce Weigle 
To the Strongest! 
Bolt Action: Operation Sealion

In 2017 I feel I bought less rulesets compared to the previous year, which is a good thing. The little gaming time I have means I really should focus on a few core rulesets. However, I find this a tad difficult, as I do like to try new rules and really just to see how the mechanics work, what I like or don't like in them etc. 

The ruleset that really did impress me in 2017 was 'To the Strongest' by Simon Millar. I bought them really as some retail therapy, as I've never been attracted to grid based games. This is possibly as a result of too many games of 'PBI' by Peter Pig against competition style gamers at my old club. However, I was pleasantly surprised at how good a game they gave, straight out of the box as it were. These are certainly rules I want to play more of in 2018, along with their forthcoming release of 'For King & Parliament', due for release at Salute. I've been lucky enough to proofread the rules and they look to be great and really campture the feel of the ECW.

One ruleset that was a disappointment was BKCIII. Having been involved in the playtesting and feedback on this, it was sad to the final product didn't live up to expectations. It shows that advice given is not always listened to. To their eternal credit, Pendraken have taken this on the chin and are reviewing these rules with a re-release due at some point in 2018.

In contrast, 'The Pikemen's Lament' was everything that I hoped it would be. Again I was involved in the playtesting and Dan & Michael, the co-authors, did listen to our feedback and take on board our recommendations.  'Hordes of the Things 2.1' looks to be a fun set of rules, but when I get to give them a run out, I'm not sure to be honest. I have other rules and periods I want to focus on in 2018 that means that these will get pushed the back of the queue.


Wargaming Books Bought
Ralph Weaver Hungarian War 1848 - 1849
Ralph Weaver Three Weeks War
Osprey Italian Medium Tanks 
Osprey Italian Army Europe 1939 - 1943
The Hollow Legions
Balkan War in pictures 
Chariots Wars by Nigel Stillman
Armies of the Macedonian & Punic Wars by Duncan Head
Medieval source books 1&2 by David Nicolle.
WWI source book by Haythornthwaite
WWII uniform book by Mollo 
Osprey Sword Beach
Airfix magazine guide 22 Russian tanks of WWII
Warfare in the Age of Marlborogh by Chandler
Marlborough Military Commander by Chandler
Market Garden Map
2nd Schleswig-Holstein War
Market Garden Wolverhampton War Studies book.
English County Regiments
The Hood Battalion in WWI

As you can see, I bought a fair few books. Many were as Xmas, Birthday and Father's Day presents. A lot were bought for planned projects, such as a market Garden Campaign for BKCII, or for some Imagi-Nations mid-19thC gaming. Others simply for no other reason than they looked good or would add to my knowledge of a period I know little about. A case in point is the excellent book on 'Warfare in the Age of Marlborough' by Chandler. Simply superb.

I'm sure I will continue to buy books, much to the despair of SWMBO, but I love books. Getting those rare chances to read them, when I have a spare few minutes, it is nice just to be able to wander over to the bookcase and randomly grab a title and open it up at a page and start reading. I did this with 'Dunkirk' by Sebag-Montefiore last night. The trouble was it made me think of my planned 1940 campaign and how little progress I've made on it. Such is the life of a wargamer!

Miniatures Bought
Pendraken bits'n'pieces for my Imagi-Nations forces
Magister Militum Elephants and Chariots for my ImaginAncients forces.
Pendraken Italian tanks 
Pendraken WWII additions
Pendraken WWII bits'n;Pieces
Pendraken SYW Hungarian army 
Pendraken SYW Prussian army
Pendraken LoA Allied Army
Pendraken LoA French Army

A lot of purchases in 2017 were for future projects and to fill holes in existing forces. My plan is 2018 is to minimise my purchase if at all possible and simply focus on getting my lead mountain based up, painted and onto the wargames table. I have forces for both sides that cover 17th, 18th, 19th & 20th Century games. Also somewhere in the attic are armies for Ancients and Medieval forces. However, these will be on the back burner as I try to concentrate on the 17th & 19th Century forces first. Whether I'm able to do this remains to be seen.

Miniatures Painted
Leven Miniatures buildings
Dragon Rampant force 
Barbarian for use with 'Crom' rules
Russian WWII tanks
AVBCW tanks
Fallchirmjager for BKCII
The Pikemen's Lament Companys.

Well 2017 was certainly a very patchy year on the painting front. Simply put, a lot of the time the muse was not with me for large parts of the year. When I did feel her presence, work or family life would get in the way. At least towards the end of the year I did have a burst of painting activity, allowing me to finally finish my WWII Fallschirmjager as well as get usable size forces for use with both 'Dragon Rampant' and 'The Pikemen's Lament'.

One positive was that i found a way to quickly paint non-WWII troops to a standard that i;m happy with. Broadly speaking this involved blocks colours on the figures, followed by a Devlin Mud wash. Once dry, the colours had highlights added, which made the figures stand out more on the table. Quite a broad brush approach (sorry for the pun) but it works for me and I'm happy with it. I think for too many years i became hung up on trying to make the figures look as good as those seen in magazines or on certain forums etc. Now i've overcome that mental hurdle, hopefully my painting speed will increase.

Projects
Imagi-Nations Ancients
WWII Wehrmacht
WWII Polish

Frankly not a good year on the projects front. I think the lack pf painting time coupled with my wargames butterfly nature saw all of the projects stall or simply never get off the ground. I'm hoping 2018 will be a more focused year. I need to have a think about what I want to achieve and then try to stick to it. Having a few projects on the go helps, as if I don;t feel like working on one, then another is ready there and waiting.

Games Played
Sword & Spear 2 - 4
Battlegroup - 1 
Bloody Big Battles - 4
Honours of War - 1 
The Pikemen's Lament - 2 
Blitzkreig Commander II - 3
Blitzkreig Commander III - 1
Crom - 3 
Trimsos - 1
To the Strongest - 3

2017 was a year of two halves on the gaming front. It got off to a good start with Dave coming round for our usual mid-week gaming get together. However a deployment overseas followed by a job change saw that finish in the late Spring. After that my gaming mojo sort of disappeared for quite some time. At least on average I was getting in a couple of games a month, so not too bad, but some of these were quite short affairs.

In 2018 it looks like it will be a very solo gaming year. So my plan is to try and get some mini-campaigns in, using BKCII and 'The Pikemen's Lament', but of which have good systems for campaigns. Alongside these, I will aim to use my wooden blocks to try out other rules, periods, scenarios etc as I paint up my figures. Hopefully this will help me see what I need to get on the table figure wise for a game. Most games will be on a 4' x 4' table or smaller, so quite small, but perfect for the sort of games I enjoy.

Wargames Shows Attended
Salute
Colours
Lincombe Barn Table Top Sale & Reveille II

At least 2017 saw my attendance at more shows compared to last year. However I feel that I'm losing my love for shows. Salute was only attended as I was part of a demo-game, which was extremely enjoyable. The show itself I didn't enjoy. I used to love the Colours show, but now I find there is nothing really to draw me to the show as a punter. Being a 10mm gamer I think is part of the reason, as there is little of interest for me at the shows. It is simply cheaper and easier to buy online.

Another reason I think is that the games on show have declined somewhat in the past few years. At least that is my perception. Compare this to some of the shows in the North and, IMHO, there is big difference in the quality and variety of games and scales on show. Fair play to Pendraken who make sure their is a good mix on offer at the Battleground show. So much so that I might even try and attend this show in 2018. A long way to go for sure, but from the show in 2017, well worth the trip. 

These days I honestly prefer following Blogs and reading magazines rather than attending shows. I hope they don't die out but I think they need to up their game to keeps punters attending.

End of Year Thoughts
Well 2017 certainly felt a funny old year on the wargames front as mentioned at the start. So what do I hope to achieve in 2018?


  • For a start I want to maintain focus on a few projects and get usable size forces painted and onto the table. If I can achieve this, then I can move on to other projects to keep things rolling.
  • I really need to have a good sort out of my lead mountain and off load stuff that I'm unlikely ever to use.
  • As mentioned above, get some solo mini-campaigns in. If possible, even make a start on my planned Market-Garden Campaign.
  • Paint more. Hopefully with the above focus, I will be able to achieve more than in 2017.
  • Get a game in once a week. Like many gamers, I spend too much time on the computer, when I could be setting up a game. Not always easy fitting it in and around family time, but something to aim for none-the-less.
  • Read more. As with the above, leave the laptop off and open a book instead.
  • Update some of my terrain, to make it more suitable for my 10mm forces and to cover a wider variety of periods. Off load any items that I no longer use.
  • Get some proper storage for my figures and terrain.

So there we have it. Another year gone and a new one to look forward to. It will be interesting this time next year to see if I've achieved any of the above. Let's hope I can!

It just remains to wish you all a very Happy New Year!



Sunday, 10 December 2017

the 3:10 to Yeovil - an AVBCW AAR

With a blast of Wintery weather forecast, I decided to knock up a quick scenario for a game of BKCII. Initially I thought of giving my Fallschirmjagers another run out, but on the spur of the moment went for some A Very British civil War action, purely to allow me to get my recently painted T-28 and T-35 on the table. 

Scenario wise I took inspiration from Scenario 11 from Grant & Asquith's 'Scenarios For All Ages', but added a train in place of the boats. The basic premise being that the BUF were trying to get their train and it's MkI Gun Carrier to a repair depot, with the 5th PFC trying to stop them. Simples. So then it was a case of coming up with some forces. Again, I use Grant & Asquith's scenario as a guide and twekaed them a bit to suit what I had to hand. 

British Union of Fascists
1 x CO
2 x HQ
8 x Infantry
2 x MGs
1 x 3" Mortar
1 x 75mm Infantry Gun
1 x A7V Tank
1 x MkIV Tank
1 x MkI Gun Carrier
3 x PzI

5th People's Flying Column
1 x CO
2 x HQ
5 x Infantry
2 x MGs
1 x 3" Mortar
1 x 75mm Infantry Gun
1 x T-28
1 x T-35
1 x Armoured Canal Boat

Deployment
The BUF would enter the table by using mobile deployment, with having to have forces either side of the river, to protect the train and the track. The 5th PFC would start on the table, deployed along the road, but not able to deploy or fight in the town, as they didn't want to upset the inhabitants. A bit of a 'hearts and minds' operation as it were.


An overall view of the table, with the BUF entering from the top table edge.
The armoured canal boat, moored up and ready for action.

The 5th PFC left flank.

The 5th PFC CO winning 'hearts & minds' in the town, with the T-28 in reserve.

the 5th PFC right flank, with the T-35 awaiting orders in the cornfield.

The BUF left flank, with the heavy tanks at their disposal.

The BUF right flank, with fast moving light tanks and infantry gun support.

The train with the MkI Gun Carrier cleared away and ready for action.


Turn 1
The BUF got off to a good start, as both flanks and the train advanced more or less in line. There was no opportunity fire from the 5th PFC, as they were either out of range or did not want to reveal their positions yet.

In contrast the 5th PFC left flank got off to a poor start, with the canal boat slipping its mooring and then slowly advancing, only to blunder, leaving the HQ at a -3CV next Turn. On the right flank the T-35 advanced, but found its shot falling just short of the train. The CO ordered the T-28 forward, then took command of the right flank, managing to order the mortar to fire on the MKI Gun Carrier, hitting it and suppressing it.


The table at the end of Turn 1.

The BUF right flank advances quickly, but the infantry are getting left behind.

The train and its 'cargo' immediately attract attention.

The BUF left flank makes a rather sedate advance.

The rather poor advance of the armoured canal boat.

The behemoth that the T-35 is, cannot quite reach the train with its guns, despite its size.


Turn 2
With the train unable to move this Turn, both BUF flanks made a cautious advance, not wanting to out run the MKI gun Carrier that they are escorting. With no visible targets, it's over the the 5th PFC.

Unsurprisingly, the left flank fails its command roll, due to the -3CV from last Turn. On the right the T-35 advances within range of the train, hitting the MkI Gun Carrier. The CO once again commands the left flank, with more mortar fire hitting the MkI Gun Carrier, this time destroying it. It didn't even get chance to fire, so an ignominious debut for this unit.


The end of Turn 2.

The BUF right flank makes good progress.

The sad demise of the MkI Gun Carrier.

The A7V and MkIV tanks make stately progress forward, with a PzI leading the way.

A view from the 5th PFC left flank.

The T-28 and T-35 in a good blocking position as the MkI Gun Carrier burns in the distance.



Turn 3
With the loss of their 'cargo' on the train, the BUF are stirred into action. The right flanks rolls a Double 1, seeing them advance, with the PzIs and Infantry Gun suppressing a mortar and infantry unit. Ready to take advantage of their position, they promptly failed their next command roll. On the right flank, the heavy tanks and mortars engage each other, seeing the A7V and T-35 suppressed.

The 5th PFC left flank HQ are pretty poor, with them only able to advance the canal boat. On the right, the T-28 destroys the MkIV tank. In response the A7V and mortar manage to suppress the T-28. Yet again the CO has to command the left flank, with combined fire seeing the BUF Infantry Gun destroyed.


The end of Turn 3.

The PzIs have raced ahead and are threatening the 5th PFC left flank. However they have lost the Infantry Gun support.

The BUF tanks come under intense fire, losing the MkIV as a result.

The 5th PFC left flank under attack.

Both the T-28 and T-35 are suppressed, but have infantry support in depth.


Turn 4
With the action developing all across the front, the BUF right flanks PzIs fire on the 5th PFC mortar unit, destroying it. On the right flank, both sides shooting is completely ineffective, with the PzI surviving a hail of fire from the T-28 and T-35. With the train out of action, the BUF CO takes command of some of the right flank. Advancing his units forward, they then Blunder and advance into the open, in plain view of the 5th PFC infantry.

It would not seem possible, but the 5th PFc left flank once again fails its command roll. Time for a trip to see 'Uncle Joe' and a Siberian health spa me-thinks. On the right things are going better, with the T-28 and T-35 combining their fire to see off the A7V. Yet again the CO manages to command the left flank, with them hitting the BUF infantry in the open.


Halfway through Turn 4.

The PzIs still threaten the 5th PFCs flank, but have been unable to turn it,

The command blunder resulted in a mad advance into the open.

The BUF left flank still hoping to push forward.

The 5th PFC left flank minus their mortar.

The 5th PFC tanks still in a good position.

Having advanced into the open, a hail of fire greets them, leaving them all suppressed.

The loss of the A7V is a severe blow to the BUF hopes.


Turn 5
The BUF got off to a shocking start, with the right flank failing their command roll and then the left flank, as they tried to manouevre their infantry into a better position, getting caught in the open by opportunity fire, resulting in 2 units suppressed. To add insult to injury, the CO blundered, leaving him with a -2CV for the next turn. With their armour all but gone, their infantry suppressed and in some cases close to destruction and with the 5th PFC in a strong position, the BUF called it a day and retreated off the table.


At close of play.

Despite the threat from the PzIs on the flank, the 5th PFC left flank is in a good position, with BUF to their front suppressed and in the open.

The BUF threat to the 5th PFC right flank has all but gone up in smoke.

The BUF left flank infantry caught by opportunity fire as they tried to move around the flank of the 5th PFC.



Post Game Thoughts
For a quick game knocked together the night before, it didn't play out too badly, even if it was a tad one sided in the end. As always, the odd die roll here or there might have given outcome. The game and scenario did through up some things that require some thought. So in no particular order:


  • I really enjoy having the WWI tanks on the table. However they are very slow and when facing the T-28 and T-35, felt somewhat outclassed. So I need to think more carefully about their use in a scenario, as the points cost is not too different, but they way the play on the table is. It might take a few games to get this right, but it will be worth the effort.
  • The same is true of the MkI Gun Carrier. I need to figure out some stats for this, the easiest way being to see what might be the closest comparison with some WWII kit. This will apply to the Birch Gun and the Seabrook Armoured Car, both of which are yet to be painted.
  • Currently the 5th Peoples Flying Column are rather too effective, given that they have relatively modern kit, compared to my other AVBCW forces. So time to paint up my British Inter-War tanks to try and even things up a bit.
  • It was great to get my train onto the table, despite it having an inauspicious debut. I bought some Dapol carriage bases to allow me to make my own armoured train. The aim being to have a variety of tops that can fit to the carriages, to give more flexibility for scenarios. Something I really should address, but whether I can find the time is another matter.
  • I tried out my Leven Miniatures for the first time in a modern setting and was pleased with how they looked. I need to add detail to the mdf bases I use to delineate the BUAs, which will help with where the roads run as well as making them look a lot better. 
  • I have pretty much finished my OOB for each of my AVBCW forces. However I need to double check them again and then make a reference sheet for each one to speed up play. This will also help me focus on which vehicles, tanks etc I need to finish painting to complete each force.
  • I might replay the scenario again this month, but tweak the terrain layout to make it a bit easier for the train to advance. The dead straight track and road, I felt, didn't help the attacker. I will re-look at the scenario and, in light of today's game, see what needs changing.
  • In recent games, mortars have been very effective, given the relatively short ranges of tank and infantry guns of this period. I might reduce the amount available, or again tweak terrain placement, to try and reduce their effectiveness. I will ponder on this as it might be an over reaction.


Given my wargames butterfly nature, I may not achieve some of the above as intended. But having seen how close some forces are to finishing, I might hopefully finish some of them before Xmas. Only time will tell...