David Bickley's Wargames Blog

The occasional ramblings of an average gamer, journeyman painter, indifferent modeller, games designer, sometime writer for Wargames Illustrated and host of games in GHQ.

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

The Battle of Coven Heath

The latest installment in our efforts to master Pike & Shotte as a rule set saw Phil and I returning to the ECW here in GHQ. As ever Phil commanded the Royalist army, as Sir Marmaduke Gaylord Robinson, while I commanded the Parliamentary army as Obadiah Bykleigh, gentleman. For those interested, Coven Heath is a little north of where I live and seemed an apt name to give our fictitious encounter battle. The objective for both sides is simply to defeat the enemy! As ever, a photomontage to give a sense of the unfolding tussle between tyranny and righteousness ~
The start of the action on the heath. Seen from the rear of the
Parliamentary right flank.
The Parliamentary army advances on the attack in Turn 1.

The Royalist army advances cautiously on the approaching foe!

In Turn 2 the Parliamentarians continue their determined

Alas, the same cannot be said for the Royalists!

On the Parliamentary left the Foote reach the field boundary.
Not so the supporting Dragoons who 'Blundered' and retired!

Not only the Dragoons proved hesitant: the Folorn Hope who
were tasked with taking the farm proved equally reluctant!

Meanwhile, for the Royalists things were starting to come
together. The foot Cavalry occupied the farm; the Dragoons
lined the hedge; and the Foote secured the field boundary!

In the first cavalry melee in Turn 4 both sides' Heavies were
'Shaken', but the Royalists lost and 'Retired' as a result of their
Morale check!

The Royalist cavalry came on again in Turn 5 but failed to
reach their opponents, giving them a chance to 'Rally' and
reduce a casualty!

Inspired by the steadiness of their Heavies, the Parliamentary
Horse charged the supporting Royalist Cavalry. Not to be
outdone they saw off the enemy in quick time!
On their right flank things are looking solid for the cause of
Righteousness! The Heavies rout their enemy in a bloody
It was n't all going their way though as Lord Walton's Foote
waver under fire and finally Rout!

The Horse are finally bested too by a new wave of Royalist
Heavy Cavalry, though their progress is stemmed by a
second regiment of Horse.

It proves but a momentary respite though, the second regiment
soon joins the first in Rout!

Despite the setback, the Heavies dominate their Royalist foe
and secure the right flank.
The centre is consolidated and the exchange of musketry
continues unabated!

Yet another blunder sends Fairfax's Foote to the rear just as
Parliament goes over to the attack in the centre!

However, it proves of little import as by Turn 10 the Royalist
cause is lost, the army is broken and flees the field!
We feel we are getting their with working out the Pike and Shotte rules, though as Phil remarked over the post game coffee and cake, there is probably still an element or two of Black Powder creeping in unnoticed! No game here in GHQ now until mid May due to the flurry of Bank Holiday Mondays hoving into view and a trip to 'Jockshire' to take in Carronade.


  1. Very nice Pike&Shot battle. Typical frontal fightings.

  2. Good looking armies and game there David. We too have lots of rules creep between BP and P and S. Doesn't have much effect really.

  3. Lovely looking game,I'm enjoying pike and shot for this war, always missing something but not missing as much as I was!
    Best Iain

  4. Jockshire indeed! Lovely game, sadly no one can defeat parliament it would seem.

    1. Keep Calm, it's a term of endearment I borrowed from Private Eye.

  5. Lovely looking game David.....another fine collection...Royalist horse pretty flaky by the sound of it.

    1. Thanks Matt, but it was the dice not the general that failed the Royalist cause.

  6. Lovely looking game David. I like Pike and Shotte, they provide a fun game that isnt too hard on the brain.I can understand your observation about BP, but to be honest there is a lot more substance in Pike and Shotte that gives a feel for the renaissance etc. Try Baroque, they give a pretty decent period feel to the game and are downloadable for free, or at least used to be.

    1. Thanks Robbie, but I'll stick with P&S I think. If I live long enough I may get to master it yet!😉

  7. A fine montage of the unfolding action or inaction at times.

    1. Inaction? Well, there was a bit of that I grant you, but three Blunders trump's anything!

  8. Lovely looking game:). I've recently bought the ECW supplement that is rather good IMHO; some nice period rules and lots of scenarios, especially small scale ones. I too am going to stick with P&S so that my brain doesn't get confused between rulesets, which is too easy these days!

    1. Confusion? I know it only too well! Glad you liked our game report Steve J. I've games with the author of the ECW and he certainly knows his stuff. I may get the supplement this summer.

  9. A lovely looking game... as always.
    Say hello to Scotchland and Falkirk...

    All the best. Aly

    1. Thanks Aly, I try my best to have nice looking games. I will pass on your best to Jockshire and Falkirk!