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Wednesday, September 30, 2020

British Agamemnon Class Medium Mechanized Walker circa 1895

The Mark VI, Number 3 of the 1st Armoured Engineer Squadron, moves forward with the 14th Sikhs through the town of Tantrapur during the First Thuggee Uprising.

The Medium Mechanized Walker Mark VI Agamemnon class, more commonly referred to as the "Bulldog" by the army, first proved its worth in its baptism of fire during the First Thuggee Uprising (The Gunga Din War) in 1891. Operated and maintained by the Royal Engineers, with the exception of the Household cavalry, the Agamemnon Walker is operated by one "steersman". In the Royal Engineers, they are nicknamed "Doggies" and in the Household cavalry they are referred to as "Blood hounds."

  The Agamemnon Class "Bulldog".

The "Bulldog" has impressive armor coupled with all terrain movement that moves faster than the average soldier in combat. Armed with a machine gun and steam fist, the Agamemnon class has proven itself more than a match to the most deadly opponeets of the Empire.

I had a lot of fun kit bashing this medium mechanized walker. The main part of the walker is an old Games Workshop plastic Tau battle suit, a claw from an old GW Space Marine (now called Epic 40K) Ork vehicle, an extra head from a leftover Perry miniature, some cardboard tubing, and a 40K Space Marine shoulder pad for the hatch. Save those bits! The steam coming out of the pipe is from a regular cotton ball.

"There they are!" The machine gun of Bulldog #3 suppresses the Thuggee rebels as the 14th Sikhs move in.

Rules for Mechanized Walkers are found on pages 29-30 in the rule book In Her Majesty's Name (Paid Link). They can be easily adapted to other rule sets. Rules for Walkers will be expanded in the Second Edition of In Her Majesty's Name.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

His Majesty's Independent Company of Rangers (Rogers' Rangers)

Rogers' Rangers was initially a provincial company from the colony of New Hampshire, attached to the British Army during the Seven Years' War (French and Indian War). The unit was quickly adopted into the British army as an independent ranger company. Major Robert Rogers trained the rapidly deployed light infantry force tasked mainly with reconnaissance as well as conducting special operations against distant targets.

Their tactics were built on earlier colonial precedents and were codified for the first time by Rogers. The tactics proved remarkably effective, so much so that the initial company was expanded into a ranging corps of 14 companies containing as many as 1,200–1,400 men at its peak.
This included three all-Indian units, two of Stockbridge Mahicans and one of Indians from Connecticut (mainly Mohegan (Mohican) and Pequot). 

Rogers was then promoted to major and served as commandant of the Ranger Corps. The ranger corps became the chief scouting arm of British Crown forces by the late 1750s. The British forces in America valued Rogers' Rangers for their ability to gather intelligence about the enemy. They were disbanded in 1761.

My Ranger Company for Rebels and Patriots (Paid Link) comes from the excellent range of FIW figures at NorthStar. They are from the packs MT 00001 British Ranger Officer and MT 00002 British Rangers 1.

For Rebels and Patriots (Paid Link) they will be a Small unit of Aggressive, Veteran Light Infantry. The unit will be only 6 figures; at 8 points out of a 24 point force they are expensive and small - but well worth it on the battlefield.

Ranger Officer

I have not purchased Musket and Tomahawks (yet) mainly because it grates me that I need to buy the rule book, buy,the supplement to play the FIW, and then purchase the cards separately for the FIW to play the game. I'm not a fan of that kind of marketing; but, hey, I hear it's a good game and I may give it a go in the future. The nice thing that NorthStar does do for the game is that the figure packs are the correct sizes for the units involved in the game.

Robert Rogers' 28 Rules of Ranging:

  1. All Rangers are to be subject to the rules and articles of war; to appear at roll-call every evening, on their own parade, equipped, each with a Firelock, sixty rounds of powder and ball, and a hatchet, at which time an officer from each company is to inspect the same, to see they are in order, so as to be ready on any emergency to march at a minute's warning; and before they are dismissed, the necessary guards are to be draughted, and scouts for the next day appointed.
  2. Whenever you are ordered out to the enemies forts or frontiers for discoveries, if your number be small, march in a single file, keeping at such a distance from each other as to prevent one shot from killing two men, sending one man, or more, forward, and the like on each side, at the distance of twenty yards from the main body, if the ground you march over will admit of it, to give the signal to the officer of the approach of an enemy, and of their number,
  3. If you march over marshes or soft ground, change your position, and march abreast of each other to prevent the enemy from tracking you (as they would do if you marched in a single file) till you get over such ground, and then resume your former order, and march till it is quite dark before you encamp, which do, if possible, on a piece of ground which that may afford your sentries the advantage of seeing or hearing the enemy some considerable distance, keeping one half of your whole party awake alternately through the night.
  4. Some time before you come to the place you would reconnoitre, make a stand, and send one or two men in whom you can confide, to look out the best ground for making your observations.
  5. If you have the good fortune to take any prisoners, keep them separate, till they are examined, and in your return take a different route from that in which you went out, that you may the better discover any party in your rear, and have an opportunity, if their strength be superior to yours, to alter your course, or disperse, as circumstances may require.
  6. If you march in a large body of three or four hundred, with a design to attack the enemy, divide your party into three columns, each headed by a proper officer, and let those columns march in single files, the columns to the right and left keeping at twenty yards distance or more from that of the center, if the ground will admit, and let proper guards be kept in the front and rear, and suitable flanking parties at a due distance as before directed, with orders to halt on all eminences, to take a view of the surrounding ground, to prevent your being ambuscaded, and to notify the approach or retreat of the enemy, that proper dispositions may be made for attacking, defending, And if the enemy approach in your front on level ground, form a front of your three columns or main body with the advanced guard, keeping out your flanking parties, as if you were marching under the command of trusty officers, to prevent the enemy from pressing hard on either of your wings, or surrounding you, which is the usual method of the savages, if their number will admit of it, and be careful likewise to support and strengthen your rear-guard.
  7. If you are obliged to receive the enemy's fire, fall, or squat down, till it is over; then rise and discharge at them. If their main body is equal to yours, extend yourselves occasionally; but if superior, be careful to support and strengthen your flanking parties, to make them equal to theirs, that if possible you may repulse them to their main body, in which case push upon them with the greatest resolution with equal force in each flank and in the center, observing to keep at a due distance from each other, and advance from tree to tree, with one half of the party before the other ten or twelve yards. If the enemy push upon you, let your front fire and fall down, and then let your rear advance thro' them and do the like, by which time those who before were in front will be ready to discharge again, and repeat the same alternately, as occasion shall require; by this means you will keep up such a constant fire, that the enemy will not be able easily to break your order, or gain your ground.
  8. If you oblige the enemy to retreat, be careful, in your pursuit of them, to keep out your flanking parties, and prevent them from gaining eminences, or rising grounds, in which case they would perhaps be able to rally and repulse you in their turn.
  9. If you are obliged to retreat, let the front of your whole party fire and fall back, till the rear hath done the same, making for the best ground you can; by this means you will oblige the enemy to pursue you, if they do it at all, in the face of a constant fire.
  10. If the enemy is so superior that you are in danger of being surrounded by them, let the whole body disperse, and every one take a different road to the place of rendezvous appointed for that evening, which must every morning be altered and fixed for the evening ensuing, in order to bring the whole party, or as many of them as possible, together, after any separation that may happen in the day; but if you should happen to be actually surrounded, form yourselves into a square, or if in the woods, a circle is best, and, if possible, make a stand till the darkness of the night favours your escape.
  11. If your rear is attacked, the main body and flankers must face about to the right or left, as occasion shall require, and form themselves to oppose the enemy, as before directed; and the same method must be observed, if attacked in either of your flanks, by which means you will always make a rear of one of your flank-guards.
  12. If you determine to rally after a retreat, in order to make a fresh stand against the enemy, by all means endeavour to do it on the most rising ground you come at, which will give you greatly the advantage in point of situation, and enable you to repulse superior numbers.
  13. In general, when pushed upon by the enemy, reserve your fire till they approach very near, which will then put them into the greatest surprise and consternation, and give you an opportunity of rushing upon them with your hatchets and cutlasses to the better advantage.

  14. When you encamp at night, fix your sentries in such a manner as not to be relieved from the main body till morning, profound secrecy and silence being often of the last importance in these cases. Each sentry therefore should consist of six men, two of whom must be constantly alert, and when relieved by their fellows, it should be done without noise; and in case those on duty see or hear any thing, which alarms them, they are not to speak, but one of them is silently to retreat, and acquaint the commanding officer thereof, that proper dispositions may be made; and all occasional sentries should be fixed in like manner.
  15. At the first dawn of day, awake your whole detachment; that being the time when the savages choose to fall upon their enemies, you should by all means be in readiness to receive them.
  16. If the enemy should be discovered by your detachments in the morning, and their numbers are superior to yours, and a victory doubtful, you should not attack them till the evening, as then they will not know your numbers, and if you are repulsed, your retreat will be favoured by the darkness of the night.
  17. Before you leave your encampment, send out small parties to scout round it, to see if there be any appearance or track of an enemy that might have been near you during the night.
  18. When you stop for refreshment, choose some spring or rivulet if you can, and dispose your party so as not to be surprised, posting proper guards and sentries at a due distance, and let a small party waylay the path you came in, lest the enemy should be pursuing.
  19. If, in your return, you have to cross rivers, avoid the usual fords as much as possible, lest the enemy should have discovered, and be there expecting you.
  20. If you have to pass by lakes, keep at some distance from the edge of the water, lest, in case of an ambuscade or an attack from the enemy, when in that situation, your retreat should be cut off.
  21. If the enemy pursue your rear, take a circle till you come to your own tracks, and there form an ambush to receive them, and give them the first fire.
  22. When you return from a scout, and come near our forts, avoid the usual roads, and avenues thereto, lest the enemy should have headed you, and lay in ambush to receive you, when almost exhausted with fatigues.
  23. When you pursue any party that has been near our forts or encampments, follow not directly in their tracks, lest they should be discovered by their rear guards, who, at such a time, would be most alert; but endeavour, by a different route, to head and meet them in some narrow pass, or lay in ambush to receive them when and where they least expect it.
  24. If you are to embark in canoes, battoes, or otherwise, by water, choose the evening for the time of your embarkation, as you will then have the whole night before you, to pass undiscovered by any parties of the enemy, on hills, or other places, which command a prospect of the lake or river you are upon.
  25. In paddling or rowing, give orders that the boat or canoe next the sternmost, wait for her, and the third for the second, and the fourth for the third, and so on, to prevent separation, and that you may be ready to assist each other on any emergency.
  26. Appoint one man in each boat to look out for fires, on the adjacent shores, from the numbers and size of which you may form some judgment of the number that kindled them, and whether you are able to attack them or not.
  27. If you find the enemy encamped near the banks of a river or lake, which you imagine they will attempt to cross for their security upon being attacked, leave a detachment of your party on the opposite shore to receive them, while, with the remainder, you surprise them, having them between you and the lake or river.

  28. If you cannot satisfy yourself as to the enemy's number and strength, from their fire, conceal your boats at some distance, and ascertain their number by a reconnoitering party, when they embark, or march, in the morning, marking the course they steer, when you may pursue, ambush, and attack them, or let them pass, as prudence shall direct you. In general, however, that you may not be discovered by the enemy upon the lakes and rivers at a great distance, it is safest to lay by, with your boats and party concealed all day, without noise or shew; and to pursue your intended route by night; and whether you go by land or water, give out parole and countersigns, in order to know one another in the dark, and likewise appoint a station every man to repair to, in case of any accident that may separate you.


Thursday, September 24, 2020

The Egyptian Adventure: Nyarlathotep, The Crawling Chaos, Part 2

Mummified Egyptian Priest

Nyarlathotep, that dastardly villain, can call on all kinds of bad guys to join his plan for world domination, pain, and suffering. From In Her Majesty's Name he can have a Mummified Priest and regular mummies. A regular Mummy is 21 points, 4+ for Pluck and does not have the Numb talent or any mysterious powers. You can give them a hand weapon for the associated costs.

 You can never have enough mummies to help you take over the world.

 Nyarlathotep can also recruit various bandits, thieves, scum and villany.

Nyarlathotep "recruits" a new follower using his, which seem to humans, "mystical powers".

"There's gold? I'm in." Nyarlathotep also has many willing followers pursuing the dream of a new Egypt.

 "Bugs Professor! Six of them!"

Name: Giant Scarabs (okay, they are plastic toy bugs)
Move: 6"
Pluck: 5+
Leadership: 0
Speed: 0
Fighting Value: +1
Shooting Value: +0
Talents: Fearless
Basic Equipment: Bite (Attack Bonus +2 with a -1 modifier)
Armor: 8

Worm Monsters! (or something). I use the stats for a Demon for the big guy and lesser demons for the little guys but do not give them Mystical Powers.

 "What the . . ?"

More Worm Monsters (I think).

The Deep Ones. The Deep Ones are an ocean-dwelling race, as evidenced by their name, with an affinity for mating with humans (ewww!) They are humanoid beings with fish, human and amphibian-like traits, and described as having grey-ish green, glossy and slippery skin. They have scaled, ridged backs, as well as webbed hands and gilled necks. Notably, they have a head similar to that of a fish, with eyes incapable of blinking. They move about in an inhuman fashion, by hopping oddly, and occasionally move on all fours. The Deeps Ones near Egypt are a sub-species with horned claws on or near their hands and some with the ability to carry crude weapons. Unfortunately for our heroes, the Deep Ones have access to Egypt because of the Nile River.

Name: Egyptian Deep Ones
Move: 6"
Pluck: 5+
Leadership: 0
Speed: 0
Fighting Value: +2
Shooting Value: +0
Talents: Swimming, Terrifying
Basic Equipment: Some have claws: +2 bonus and -1 pluck; others carry crude axes.
Armor: 8
Points: 20 with claws or axe

 The Deep Ones prefer to stay near the water . . . but will venture out.

Monday, September 21, 2020

The Egyptian Adventure: Nyarlathotep, The Crawling Chaos, Part 1

The false pharaoh Nyarlathotep.

Nyarlathotep is an inter-dimensional alien entity who often manifests in the form of an Egyptian pharaoh, especially when he confronts his nemesis Randolph Carter. Nyarlathotep differs from the other aliens in a number of ways. Most of them are exiled to stars, like Yog-Sothoth and Hastur, or sleeping and dreaming like Cthulhu. Nyarlathotep, however, is active and frequently walks the Earth in the guise of a human being, usually a tall, slim, joyous man. He has "a thousand" other forms, most of these reputed to be maddeningly horrific. Most of the other inter-dimensional beings use strange alien languages, but Nyarlathotep uses human languages and can be mistaken for a human being. 

"We have stopped you before and we will stop you again - there are new players in the game," states Nyalathotep's arch-nemesis Randolph Carter.

Nyarlathotep delights in cruelty, is deceptive and manipulative, and even cultivates followers and uses propaganda to achieve his goals. Nyarlathotep is also known as the "Crawling Choas"; a name that describes his true form and his malevolent acts against humanity. The faculty and staff of Miskatonic University are convince is ultimate goal is to destroy the human race and possibly the Earth as well. And that it will start in Egypt at the excavation site at Dara . . . 

Here are the game stats for In Her Majesty's Name and they can be easily converted for other popular games:

Name: Nyarlathotep, The Crawling Chaos
Move: 6"
Pluck: 2+
Leadership: 2+
Speed: 0
Fighting Value: +4
Shooting Value: +0
Talents: Dreadful, Erudite Wit, Immortal (campaigns only) Martial Artist, Terrifying
Mysterious Powers: Up to 30 points of Mystic Powers 
Basic Equipment: The Pearls of Madness (Armor 13)
Armor: 13
Points: 84 (not counting Mystic Powers or Immortal (10 points) for campaigns)

Nyarlathotep's true form.

Aa Akhon is the deadliest warrior of Ancient Egypt and brought back through space and time to serve as Nyarlathotep's body guard and enforcer - his most important, evil plans are successful because of his loyalty. He uses two khopesh (Egyptian sickle sword) when fighting and is deadly in their use.

Updated Talent: Sword Master. Sword Master is similar to Gunslinger allowing the splitting of their FV with a blade weapon against 2 opponents. If the character has two blade weapons, and only uses their FV against one opponent, they can use one blade to add +1 to their armor. If they only have one blade weapon and are attacked, they can add +1 to their armor but cannot attack that turn.

Name: Aa Akhon
Move: 6"
Pluck: 4+
Leadership: 0
Speed: +1
Fighting Value: +4
Shooting Value: +0
Talents: Duelist, Fanatic, Fearless, Lightning Draw, Sword Master
Basic Equipment: Two Khopesh (Military Swords), 
Armor: 9
Points: 56

Maahes is a solar inter-dimensional being who was worshiped as a fire war god. However, Maahes was rarely referred to by name. Rather he was usually referred to by his most common epithet, “The Lord of the Massacre”. He was given a number of other bloodcurdling epithets including; “Wielder of the Flaming Sword”, “The Scarlet Lord” (referring to the blood of his victims) and “Lord of Slaughter”. Yet, he was not seen as a force of evil. He is.

Name: Maahes
Move: 6"
Pluck: 4+
Leadership: 0
Speed: 0
Fighting Value: +4
Shooting Value: +0
Talents: Fireproof, Fortitude, Intuitive
Basic Equipment: The Flaming Sword of Ra (See Flame Weapons in In Her Majesty's Name Gothic), Breastplate
Armor: 11
Points: 44

The Destroyer of Anubis

The ancient Egyptians believed that in the netherworld, the Duat, there were various gates, doors and pylons crossed every night by the solar boat (Atet) of the sun-god Ra and by the souls directed to the world of the dead. Every gate was guarded by a minor god who allowed access only to the souls capable of pronouncing the secret name of the god himself, as a sort of "password". Well, here's one of the them. The good news is he will only be found in ancient ruins, tombs, ancient temples, etc.; the bad news is our adventurers will be going to ancient ruins, tombs, ancient temples, etc.

Name: The Destroyer of Anubis
Move: 6"
Pluck: 4+
Leadership: 0
Speed: 0
Fighting Value: +5
Shooting Value: +0
Talents: Beserker, Terrifying, Tough
Basic Equipment: The Axe Scythe of the Destroyer (2 handed weapon, +3 weapon bonus and -2 to pluck), Ancient Armor
Armor: 11
Points: 55

Next: Other Nastiness that Nyarlathotep can use for his nefarious plans.

 What's the use of having an evil inter-dimensional alien who dresses like he's from ancient Egypt if we can't have mummies?

"The whole world will bow to me in pain and suffering!"

Friday, September 18, 2020

British Highland Light Infantry Company for the French and Indian War

 British Highlander Light Infantry from NorthStar Miniatures. They are the usual excellemt quality from NorthStar with realistic proportions, historical accuracy, hardly noticeable mold lines and minimal flash.
I grew up in central Pennsylvania the Allegheny Mountains and I have always been drawn to the first world war, the one that began in a remote glen in southwestern Pennsylvania in 1753 and by its end changed the look of the world in 1763.  It sets up the American War of Independence, the decades of war between Britain and France -- in many ways, the modern age itself.
Three proud Highland regiments fought in North America during the French and Indian (Seven Year's War - which was Nine for North America): The 77th Foot (Montgomery's Highlanders), the 78th Foot (Fraser's Highlanders), and the Black Watch, the 42nd (Highland) Regiment of Foot. The 42nd would be designated in 1758 as the 42nd (Royal Highland) Regiment. Undoubtedly, the exploits of the 42nd, 77th and 78th Highlanders in some of the most bloody and desperate battles on the North American continent were a critical factor in transforming the overall image of Highlanders from Jacobite rebels to Imperial heroes in the latter half of the 18th century.

The Light Infantry Companies, spurred on by Lord Howe, were trained by and with American Provincials and the Ranger companies to be more effective for their regiments in the American wilderness. The companies removed all lace, replaced their broadswords with tomahawks, and often wore leggings under their kilts to protect their legs in the thick underbrush. They earned a fearsome reputation with the French, Canadians and their Indian allies.

Whoops, I have to fix the plaid of the middle lad!
Currently I am building a company, based on a generic Highland unit for use with (paid link) Rebels and Patriots (Paid link). I say generic because I really haven't decided which unit I'll do: The 42nd had yellow facings (I'm not going to dive into the controversy as to what actual year they switched to blue as a royal regiment), the 77th had green facings and the 78th had white. I've painted these figures with a "faded" yellow look so I can change the facings later if I change my mind. Anyway, I'm a big fan of Daniel Mersey and Michael Leck and their rules are fast, playable and simulate the warfare of the period. I must admit, the NorthStar release of Muskets and Tomahawks II got me started, and the Northstar figure packs for the games are already organized as units. I might have to give them a try.
For Rebels and Patriots (Paid Link) I'm thinking of building (for starters) this 24 point basic force:
1. 1 Large Aggressive Shock Infantry unit (Highlanders) @ 7 points. Highland units were larger than regular British Line so I think this will be appropriate.
2. 1 Small Aggressive Light Infantry unit (Highland Light Infantry) @ 6 points.
3. 1 Small unit of Aggressive, Veteran Light Infantry (Rangers) @ 8 points.
4. 1 Aggressive Skirmishers (Mohawk Tribe) @ 3 points.

I already have all of the figures I need for this force (16 more kilts to paint - sigh) and I have started getting their French opponents. Needless to say I will be updating you on my progress!

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Allan Quartermain Redux for 2020

Allan Quartermain is one of my favorite fictional, literary characters and the novels are a fascinating look at a sympathetic European toward Colonialism but is still a product of his times. Plus the adventures are outstanding and have interesting characters and great scenarios for gaming.

 Allan Quartermain

I think over the last 4 or 5 years I have used at least 3 different characters from various manufacturers as Allan Quartermain in my gaming. Toward the end of 2019 (what a long time that seems), I had purchased on eBay the Wargames Foundry Congo pack "The White Men Expeditions" as they had figures for two units I was building:  The Tambling-Goggin Expedition and a unit of Askaris for another gamer. What was left over was my new Allan Quartermain. The figure can also be found in the Stouthearted Brits if you don't want to buy the whole Congo pack. 

 Captain John Good for Quartermain's Company. I just use the stats for Great White Hunter from the game In Her Majesty's Name.

Captain John Good is still along with the Adventuring Company (how could he not be with his beautiful white legs!). I have also added Ntando the Witch Doctor of the Natabale as I have improved in using mystical powers.


Last but not least I have added Camp Guards to the Company to give them a little more "ummph" against some of the antagonists Quartermain has been dealing.

The Camp Guards.
Who knows, depending on the size of the game, a socialite or two may show up.
Who knows, depending on the size of the game, a socialite or two may show up.

 Off on another adventure.

Guess who always plays Quartermain!

Monday, September 14, 2020

Financing the Hobby: Yep, Auction Time again.


As many of you know, I use eBay auctions to finance my gaming hobby (unless I get a special grant from my beautiful bride who is Chief of Staff and Minister of Finance). Here are the latest:


Pulp Heroes!