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Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016: A Great year for Painting, Gaming and all that!

I had a plan this year and for the most part I stuck to it (okay, I added some projects).  The only thing I did not finish are two element of cavalry for my Dux Bellorum King Arthur army.

Here was the plan for 2016 and Hooray for me and a pat on the back!

1. My English Civil War Infantry are now complete as are were some extra command figures:

A momentous occasion as Phase 3 of the English Civil War project is complete.  I now have 14 regiments of foot complete and mounted for Victory Without Quarter.
 Oliver Cromwll leading Parliament's finest.

Lord Leven will be a "generic" Scottish brigade commander and currently will command the Irish Brigade of Montrose's Scottish Royalist army. Figure mounted for my favorite ECW rules Victory Without Quarter.

2. In Her Majesty's Name is my new passion and allows me to paint numerous "smaller" armies.

     a. Scotland Yard:

 The world's greatest consulting detective and his able companion the doctor have their hand's full battling for Queen and country. The most famous police force in the world, Scotland Yard is here to help.

     b. Imperial Chinese Army.

Gulwalgiya Ronglu is a Manchu statesman and general of the Chinese Imperial Army.
     c. Lord Greystoke.

 Tarzan and his fierce Waziri companions with Jane Porter in the background.

     d. Sikh Rifle Company:

 A close-up of the Maxim MG from Copplestone with the Artizan Designs infantry protecting their left flank.

     e. Highlander Rifle Company:

The Gordan Highlanders while stationed in India went on to serve in various foreign campaigns including The Relief of the Chitral Expedition 1895 and the Tirah Campaign of 1897 - 1898.

     f. Various Characters:

 Huzzah! Professor Nightingale is rescued (again) by our heroic ladies. 
Ranjit Singh, Lady Rachel and Colonel Armstrong.
A new adventure?
"It was some time before the health of my friend Mr. Sherlock Holmes recovered from the strain caused by his immense exertions in the spring of '87.  The whole question of the Netherland-Sumatra Company and of the colossal schemes of Baron Maupertuis are too recent in the minds of the public . . ."
 "I'm the Doctor. I'm a Time Lord. I'm from the planet Gallifrey in the Constellation of Kasterborous. I'm 903 years old, and I'm the man who's gonna save your lives and all six billion people on the planet below. You got a problem with that?"
3. Dux Bellorum.  I did finish the British-Romano infantry but I need to finish the last stand of Riders and Mounted Skirmishers:
Shieldwall Infantry for Arthur's army.

4. The Men Who Would be Kings.

     a. Anglo-Zulu War:

 Men of Harlech, march to glory,
Victory is hov'ring o'er ye,
Bright-eyed freedom stands before ye,
Hear ye not her call?

     b. Second Afghan War:

The Mountain Gun and Crew (Indian) from Artizan Designs. 

5. Dragon Rampant bonus! I love this game.

The fairest of them all and her seven companions take on the dragon rampaging through the kingdom.

The Three Hunters cutting their way through the bad boys in black!

6. Games, games and more games!  Here are some highlights:

The Roopkund Lake Incident?
"We have long sticks with points and we know how to use them!"
Six Regiments of Foot make for an impressive battle line and "battalia."
With a mighty roar the forces of evil advance!

Pwew! Pwew! Pwew!
Meanwhile in Darkest Africa . . .

 The Chinese rush into the annex through the rubble of the door.  WHO is the mysterious caretaker is in an adjacent room that the Chinese are trying to find?
  "What the . . . ?"  Yi Niu, greatest swords woman of China, discovers a strange structure as she races ahead as the vanguard of General Raglan's company.
As the troglodytes and yeti discover, there is a mummy in the room!

"Huzzah!" proclaims Professor Nightingale in celebration of Gertrude Bell discovering another lost city. "I'll drink to that", says Private Hook.
“Hither came Conan, the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandaled feet.”

Friday, December 30, 2016

An Oldie but Goodie: Fire and Fury

 I purchased the first edition of the rules way back in 1991 The pages are now falling out and there are creases, but I love it!  I'm not sure if it is in print anymore as the creator of the game is focusing on Regimental Fire and Fury. 

Fire and Fury is a grand tactical scale game that uses brigades as the maneuver elements allowing larger battles of the ACW to be fought. Players take on the role of Division and Corps commanders. Battles such as Gettysburg, Manassas and Antietam are easily recreated completely with this set of rules. It is not for gamers that want to dabble in the details of regimental level ACW wargaming but is suited for those that would rather recreate the larger battles of the war.

The game can be played with all scales with just some modification of base sizes.  I have seen the game played in 25mm, 15mm and 10mm.  I use 15mm with base sizes of 1" x 3/4" and mounting 3-4 infantry figures representing either 150 or 200 men while each gun model represents a complete battery of 6-8 guns. Units average 5-7 stands for Union and 6-9 stands for Confederate forces but can be as small or as large as necessary to represent historical brigades.  It was the first set of rules I saw that used markers (Disorder, low on ammunition, wrecked batteries, etc.) made from miniatures instead of casualty caps or cardboard chits like other wargames to add to the "feel" of the tabletop battle.

Each side alternates taking turns, first Union then Confederate. The turn's sequence of play is identical for each side, consisting of three phases: 

  • Maneuver Phase -- Each of the moving side's units is diced for prior to movement. Fire and Fury combines the morale with the movement of each unit. Units that are disordered or have suffered significant casualties will suffer, or recover from, loss of cohesion in this phase. Penalties range from limited movement to complete unit dispersal. Each unit may move in turn after their movement roll.
  • Musketry and Cannonade Phase -- All units which can fire may do so. Non-moving troops fire first, then moving troops in two separate sub-phases.
  • Charge (Combat) Phase -- Combat is resolved with a simple system of combat modifiers that are applied to each sides units die rolls. Combat results are applied immediately. Play then switches to the non-moving players phase.
As a gamer and former military history instructor, this game to me best simulates the ebb and flow of ACW battles.  But more importantly, it's a FUN GAME!  Sometimes we forget that they are games and we should be having fun with them!