Saturday, January 31, 2009

2nd General de Brigade game

Thanks to my new blog, I made contact with another person here int the L.A. area who was interested in General de Brigade. We played our first game tonight and had a great time together. We scaled down the Waterloo scenario in the rulebook. Slava took the French and I had the British and allies. At left is a picture of Slava moving his Guard forward.

The picture above captures the opening shots of the battle.

To the left is a photo of two Guard battalions that are close to coming to grips with two Brunswick battalions. The right hand Guard battalion had suffered several casualties from the supporting British foot battery.

Below shows even more of the line as the French make their final push on the ridge.

The British guards unleashed a murderous fire that stopped three French guard battalions cold. Two faltered and the third was forced to retreat

Even on the extreme right of the allied line, the French met some stiff resistance from a Nassau battalion. The lone allied cavalry unit also switched from a support order to assault which forced two battalions into square, slowing the advance on this flank dramatically.
We called the game at this point. The French had made significant gains on the allied left, driving back the two Brunswick battalions. Additionally, they had brought up their 12lb battery into a position that would allow it to enfilade the ridge. The Dutch/Belgian brigade changed orders and began to march to the battered flank, but it would probably be to little too late.
As could be expected, the French casualties were extremely high while the allies were incredibly light.
My thanks to Slava for helping me get a much clearer grasp of the rules. I look forward to many more tabletop encounters!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Wargame account

I was able to learn how to post pictures on the General de Brigade discussion page. It was amazingly easy. So I put my account on there and it turned out pretty well. You can check it out by following the link I just added to my page. Check it out.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Figures for sale

This is probably a good place to post pictures of figures I have for sale. My first offerings are 15mm Old Glory Austrians. There are two line battalions of 24 figures and three grenadier battalions of 16 figures. Check out my add on Batertown for details. Click the photo to enlarge it. This will show you the amount of detail on each figure.

General de Brigade game conclusion

The final turn of the game was an eventful one. In this bound, the French coordinated an attack
on the allied right. It was a formidable task, as the left portion of this line was held by two British regiments. The assault met with mixed results. The photo above captures the highlight of the day. A small French battalion was able to drive back a much larger British counterpart. The battalions to the left, however, were not as successful. The second picture captures the first "double six" of the game, rolled by the British battalion on the left. This faltered the Frenchmen and stunned general de brigade Gauthier, causing him to withdraw from the field for one turn. Lloyd's battery to the right also halted the second French column.On the extreme right of the allied line, the French endured a withering volley from a Hanoverian line battalion and pressed on into mele, forcing the men in red to retreat, and continuing to threaten the entire line.
On the allied left, the firefight continued with the French taking the worst of it. The resulting casualties made any further aggression on this flank out of the question. At this point, the game was over.
I learned a lot from this encounter. Artillery wasn't as devestating as I thought it would be, and several infantry volleys had little effect. But casualties were still inflicted. In this game, the attrition really takes a toll. Maneuvering was also a challenge as the units were tightly packed. This was especially true when trying to pull the cavalry back from its attack. It moved quickly, though, and was quite enjoyable.

Favorite links

I have always thought that terrain is almost as equally important as the figures that adorn it. It makes the whole battle much more visually appealing, which is what I like most about minatures. A company that makes beautiful buildings for the tabletop is Crescent Root Studios. You can buy them painted, but I have bought mine unpainted and do them up myself. The ones on the left are from their 15mm European range (except for the Hovels Tudor house on the extreme left of the photo).

The buildings to the left are from their Middle East range. The roofs on just about all of the models come off so that troops can be placed inside which I think is a nice feature. They are an absolute joy to paint.

The building at the left is a photo from their web site. They show all of their buildings painted in a variety of ways. Follow the link under my favorite web sites to check them out.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Other areas of interest

As I have gotten older different periods have caught my attention. One of my fancies was the British imperial period. It was the movies Zulu and The Charge of the Light Brigade that enamored me in my youth. The picture above is a small portion of my collection. The rule set I use for this period is "Battle for Empires."

I also have a huge collection of Seven Years Wars period figures. There are Prussians, Russians, Austrians, French and Hanoverians. Barry Lyndon was the culprit here. The image of the British regiment marching across the field toward a French line was my inspiration. I use the system Warfare in the Age of Reason for this period, though I have enlarged the units by 50% because I like the look of bigger battalions.
My attraction to the American Revolution was the smaller armies. Also to blame was an article in Wargames Illustrated that featured some beautiful 25mm figures. My most memorable games have been in my period. A friend of mine brought over his son for a game. My step son and his son commanded the British force while the two dads took the Americans. It looked pretty grim for the Americans, but on the very last turn the two youngsters put their commanding general in base contact with a regiment. A casualty was sustained and the commander had to roll to see if he was hit. Double sixes were tossed. To determine the severity of the wound roll was then rolled: a one. The commander was killed. This started a domino effect that lead to an American victory. Youth is wasted on the wrong people! Oh, the rules used were Johnny Tremain, a varient of the Johnny Reb III series.
Then there is the American Civil War. My cousin and I bought some Airfix figures when we were teens and had some incredible battles in my backyard. My favorite rule set of all time is Johnny Reb III. I like the flow of the game and its scale. It is probably the favorite of my students as well. There is something about being a brigadier general and leading a gallant charge against a stubborn foe.
Landscapes Turned Red, by Stephen Sears is absolutely the best book I have ever read. I used this battle to build up my armies. I have both sides at a scale of 1:30, along with supply trains and a wide range of buildings. I even have the cavalry for both sides which I seldom use. But they sure look nice on the table!
As if the above were not enough, I also have a collection of ancient Gauls and Romans, rebased for Field of Glory. And then there is my Culloden collection, which is the most beautiful of the lot. I'll take some pictures and post them later. My new camera makes such a huge difference in photo quality.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

GDB Game continued

Turn four- The French enjoy some initial success when 2nd and 3rd battalions of the 4th Legere are able to cross bayonets with the Luneberg Light Battalion. The Lunebergers are routed which creates a dangerous gap in the allied line. Supported by the two battalions of the 100th Ligne, Jamin is poised to roll up the allied right flank.

Turn five- While Jamin reforms his infantry on the French left, Husson's brigade charges up the ridge held by three Brunswick battalions and a foot battery. Two of the battalions and the battery are sheltered behind a stone wall which will prove to be very helpful. When the smoke from the Brunswick volleys cleared, all four French battalions had been halted. The column on the extreme right of the French attack is even forced to retreat.

My first General de Brigade game

After dabbling with the rules for several months, it was time to try out my first game to see how they played out. The scenario was fictional, pitting two allied infantry divisions (British/Hanoverian and Brunswick) against three French (two infantry and a light cavalry). The picture at right shows the British/Hanoverian division holding the cross roads. A wood is to their right which is held by the Hanoverian light battalions. To left is a ridge that is held by the Brunswick battalions. On the extreme left is the Brunswick cavalry.

Turn One- The Allies won the initiative and chose to let the French go first to discern their intentions. Three of the four French infantry brigades were ordered to assault as was the lancer brigade. The fourth French brigade was to engage the Brunswick light infantry on the extreme right to protect the flank of the main assault. The chasseurs a cheval were also on this flank for support. Cleeve's KGL foot battery fired the opening shot at a limbered French 12lb battery. Depite the vulnerabilty of the target, only one hit was inflicted.

Turn Two- The French won the initiative and continued to move forward. Cleeve's battery continued to fire, joined by Lloyd's battery and the Brunswick horse artillery.

Turn Three- The French win the initiative again and keep it. Jamin's brigade engages the Hanoverian light infantry in the woods. The French 12lb battery unlimbers and fires at the Allied infantry, but to no effect.

The longest journey starts with the first step

Perhaps it is arrogant to think that anyone else would be interested in my wargaming activities, but I really enjoy reading about other people's exploits and thought I would put my fingers to a keyboard and have at it.
I love history, particularly military history. I went from the big Fort Apache figures in elementary school to Airfix plastic figures in high school and college. Napoleonics was my first love, followed closely by the American Civil War. Then I discovered the 15mm Minifigs and that opened a whold new chapter. Right now, most of my figures are Old Glory. I just finished a project of putting together the complete forces for Quatre Bras. The picture below is a small sampling of those figures. But I also have a large collection of ACW, AWI, SYW and even some Brits and Dervishes.
It seems what I enjoy most about this hobby is building up the armies and then seeing them laid out on the gaming table. I have a very small townhouse, but my wife has graciously allowed me to have at 8ftX5ft gaming table permanently set up in our garage. I also enjoy making the battlefield look as realistic as possible with buildings, trees and other accesories.
I am a member of HMGS Pacific Southwest, but that hasn't helped me much in finding gaming partners. I enjoy the conventions and hosting games, but that hasn't really parlayed into any lasting gaming relationships.
My primary gaming opportunities come through a class I have been sponsoring that last five summers for middle schoolers. When the program started they were looking for unique classes. I wondered if there might be interest in my soldiers. There certainly has been. I usually run the class for two to three weeks with 10 to 18 students in each class. I have to say I have been pleasantly surprised at how quickly the kids pick up on the rules and their enthusiasm for the games.
I will be learning as I go. This is a new experience for me. If you have any comments or suggestions for how to make this blog better, please let me know.