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.

Thursday 28 November 2019

Attack on Fort Découragement

As I mentioned in the previous Blog post,Phil and I tackled a second F&IW game in our regular Monday meeting here in GHQ last week. Phil as Lord Rawnsley assumed command of the British force, keen to follow up its success under Lord Walton, while I had the task of rallying my defeated French force and halting the British advance. In this I was aided by being able to fall back towards Fort Decouragement to give my battered force a secure base at least. I also had the very faint hope for the timely arrival of my Paddoquoi Allies who had taken the previous defeat very badly.
At the start of the game, the Fort and its environs as the armies

De Bykli overseas the deployment of the defenders as the
British under Lord Rawnsley hasten to the attack.

Some early success for the French! The British attack falters
under French fire!

The Rangers advance on the British right flank. But those
treacherous Padoquoi have been seduced to the British cause!

Local French settlers have flanked the British infantry to aid
their regulars and woodsmen.

A group of Rangers are in the French rear, an ominous sign...

Oblivious to the new threat, the French look to their front.

Fire from the fort disrupts the Rangers and eases the threat on
the French positions.

But in the next turn, its all up for the French and they march
away from the fort a broken force...

While on the French left the treacherous Paddoquoi massacre
the surviving French settlers!

At least De Bykli saves his face, marching out with the Honours
of War as the fort is put to the flame!
Again Black Powder proved robust enough to deliver an excellent and gripping game going almost to the wire despite our tinkering with the parameters of unit sizes and the nature of command and control. It will be a while until we revisit the F&IW here in GHQ. I hope to add a few more figures this coming year, the usual riders to ambition being added of course. No games here in GHQ next week, as Phil is away on a tad of R&R and Jon is unavailable,but don't despair I have some finished units ready to show you next week. Now there's a treat to look forward to...or not.

Saturday 23 November 2019

More surplus figures utilized

A while back now I featured some small bases utilizing surplus American figures from the War of 1812 ongoing expansion project. I use them to represent skirmishers and to populate buildings more readily than the larger rectangular or square bases. I've done a few now for the British regulars stationed in the Canadas at the outbreak of hostilities ~
These Foundry British flank company figures, sculpted by Aly Morrison back in the day, were left over from a bag of assorted figures I got from Colonel Bill's earlier in the year. As they say, "Waste not, want not!"
While on the subject of using up figures I've also been painting up some Foundry American Rifles. Rather than just paint them as more US Rifle Regiment figures I've created an entirely fictitious Volunteer Rifles unit with a totally made up name and uniform, the Lafayette Rifle Volunteers. I'm half way through them, so hope to complete the unit by the end of the month.

Saturday 16 November 2019

Attack on Petit-St Mellon

Jon and I were trying out a few ideas for a French and Indian War game using my collection of Redoubt Enterprise figures and Black Powder 2, including the recent dedicated theatre supplement. The scenario sees a British attack on a small French settlement, Petit-St Mellon. Lord Walton assumed command of the British force sent to burn the French out and hopefully secure more Paddoquoi allies, while De Bykli assumed the mantle of French commander charged with the defence of the settlement ~
The Rangers just fail to make contact with the Padoquoi village in Turn 1.

Meanwhile the British Regulars, their left screened by their Light Company,
advance on the French left.

The inhabitants of Petit-St Mellon prepare to defend their homes. In the
background the French artillery makes slow progress towards the left flank.

"Not quite time for the last rites, Father." ...not just yet anyway!

French regulars have been wrong-footed by the British attack on the weaker
French left flank.

The French left is held by two elements of Coureur Du Bois, who will very
soon be driven in by the British infantry advancing on their position.

The British advance relentlessly supported by their native allies. We treated
each base as a separate unit in BP terms for firing and fighting and it seemed
to work just fine throughout the game.

The French infantry attempt to take the British in the flank, while the folk of
Petit-St Mellon hold off the Light Company. It was looking very good for the
French cause at that point!

The remaining Paddoquoi have been persuaded to come over to the French
side and set off with a whoop to take a few scalps! Or so I hoped!!

Four Morale Save failures later, the French are being driven back by Turn 8.

In Turn 9 a further two Morale Save failures sees the French force Broken.
The French commander orders a retreat and Petit-St Mellon will burn!
We both thoroughly enjoyed our game and felt that until very late on in proceedings it was very open as to which side might triumph. In the end my superb firing throws, sadly matched by Jon's equally good Saving throws, could not be repeated by my Morale saves. Four on the bounce failed at less than 4 each for my first four attempts! But then I find this the real beauty of Black Powder in action, the very unpredictability of events keeps the game alive until the last throw of the dice! Al being well with the sick and ailing on Monday Phil and I will be giving the rules another outing in the F&IW setting with a follow up scenario I'm busy devising this weekend.

Sunday 10 November 2019

Upper Canada Militia 1812

Foundry figures sculpted by Aly Morrison of course, the first of this type I’ve added to the Anglo-Canadian forces.These have been a bit of a struggle for me to be frank though as there proved to be no obvious short cuts to the finished look I wanted for them. In all they took a couple of weeks to finish to my satisfaction. The colour bearers come from the British infantry command pack and the officer from the pack of British officers and sergeants. The flags are by Flags or War and the bases from Warbases. I’m pleased by the final look of the unit, so I hope any visitors will be too ~

Next up are the bases of spare flank company figures to act as skirmish markers. Each of the three bases will be painted in the facing colours of one of the regular units serving in the Canadas at the time.
I’ve also taken the decision to have two extra regular units added to the army, again using the Foundry range. These are being painted for me by John Hill and I hope to be able to show you the both units sometime towards the end of the month, or early December at the latest. The first unit, the 1st Foot, the Royal Scots are already based and textured, awaiting static grass application and the flags fixing to the ensign figures. The second unit, the 100th Foot are even as I type under the brush.