Saturday, January 20, 2018

Battle of Povorot, 1812: LANNES Campaign

A week ago, Barry (as Lt General Borris Badenov) and John and I (as Francois Faucon, General de Division, in search of his Marshal's Baton) got together for the next battle of our LANNES campaign, this time set in Russia in 1812. 

Povorot is a rough Russian equivalent of "Wheeling", the name of the village on the Warplan 5/5 card generating the battlefield. The rocks mark out a 6 x 6 grid, and I allowed another foot on either side to provide some maneuvering (? wheeling) room, especially as our "Corps" have grown to be fairly large now. 

Using the pregame set up system from Field of Battle, 2nd edition, it was determined that Barry would choose either the orientation or which side he would enter from, and I would choose whichever he did not. I would have to deploy an extra command group on my first placement of troops on the table, and one of my 5 command groups would be delayed D4 MOVE cards before it could arrive onto the table. 

The results of the Deployment process. it wound up being my largest command group that was late - 2 Guard foot units, 3 enthusiastic but brittle Line units, and a foot battery, lead by one of my better commanders. John opted to command this force so that he could observe the earlier part of the battle and learn the system, being new to Field of Battle. 

Another view of the completed deployment. Imaginatively, we have both placed a cavalry brigade on each flank, and our infantry in the center. As a result of both the cumulative effects of the preceding battles and the random unit generation process, my Cavalry arm was both stronger and of better quality (2 Dragoons, 2 Chasseurs, and now 3 elite Hussar units vs 3 Dragoons and 2 Uhlan units for Barry). Conversely, he had more and better artillery units, and the quality of his generals was more varied (from a really bad Leadership die of D6 to an amazing D12 + 2).

Better view of the Russian deployment. I was secretly please that he seemed to be having some traffic problems, making it harder for him to take best advantage of his superior Artillery arm. I made out a bit better than Barry did at the rest of the pre game set up, getting 4 more morale points and an Exceptional Sequence deck to Barry's Skilled deck. 

I won the first initiative roll for 5 pips, and allowed Barry to go first, hoping that he would burn some valuable cards without being able to use them. If I recall, he turned 3 Leadership Cards (needed to rally later), one Artillery Firepower card, and maybe an Infantry Firepower card. I was fortunate enough to turn some MOVE cards early on, and then Barry finally got a MOVE as well. 

My right flank Cavalry brigade, with 4 excellent units, used a Triple Magic Move to swing around to threaten the Russian left flank, using an apple orchard to screen them from fire by the lone Russian battery on their left flank. My 2 infantry commands advanced to the edge of the Pine woods, and another triple magic move allowed my Young Guard Battalion to seize the church in Povorot village. The guardsmen made themselves at home as they sought out and happily consumed the sacramental wine supply!

The French Light Brigade under Bernard Bellier, is seen here making threatening moves against the Russian Left. 

On my left, General Simeon Souris had been monkeying around, said officer being rather a dullard (D8), who could not roll up a move of at least 2 segments (which would allow his accompanying Guard Horse battery to Limber - Move - Unlimber so as to close the range to the Russians). Fortunately, the commander of the Russian Dragoon Brigade, Maj General Boromirov, was a notorious hothead, who could not long resist the urge to try conclusions with the French cavalry, who were equal in number to his own... leaving aside the small matter of a supporting fully loaded Guard Horse battery on the French side!

The Russians made fine use of their next MOVE card in the center, bring up their artillery, pouring fire into the besotted guardsmen defiling the holy church, and routing a supporting French battalion with a close range volley directly into their flank. "Sauve qui peut!"  The guardsmen, however, shrugged off all the enemy fire with aplomb, although their return fire was equally ineffective. 

Se the gap between the battery and the infantry along the edge of the woods? We can thank the Russian battery for that!

"How far is it back to Warsaw?"
The two Russian Grenadier units and he rest of the Russian Central command threaten to roll up the French center. Another Russian Move card is turned - and the Brigade Commander rolls "1" - no Move!   No problem, the C-in-C, Boris Badenov re-rolls using his own D12, and rolls.... a second 1! 
The Russian counterattack in the center fizzles. 

Results of the Cavalry clash on the French Left.
"It is squirrel, Boris... but where is Moose?'

Another view. 

Souris' Dragoons reform and counter charge their Russian counterparts as...

(A  drum-roll, please, Maestro!)
Rene Renard (John's command) arrives at the head of the Guard Brigade, heading for Povorot village. Note also the rallying of the three French infantry units routed earlier in the action, and now moving back, albeit cautiously! 

Overview of the situation as the French "Reserve" command arrives.  

Meanwhile, on the French Right, a "triple magic move" by Bellier's Light Cavalry Brigade ...

threatens to sweep away the outnumbered and outclassed Russian Uhlans.
Looks like no 'pine suppositories' today, boys. Just the cold steel version!

Both Uhlan units are completely destroyed!
One Russian Line battalion (rear)  has already formed square in anticipation of this result.

The Russian foot battery turns to bear on the French Cavalry!
However, in so doing it exposes its flank to long range fire from the opposing French battery (smoke in the upper left corner).
Result- the Russian battery was Silenced! 

The Russians are out of Morale points and start to pay them to the French. A Russian Triple magic move is used for a fire, limber, retreat, and unlimber move by their main artillery batteries. 

The sole remaining Russian cavalry unit manages to Rout one French Dragoon unit. 

The Russians still hold Povorot village. The Guard Jagers (in the small house to the right of the church) in particular withstand repeated fire by the French battery and Legere without suffering any apparent ill effects. Must be good Russian Vodka giving them such staying power... or perhaps it was Prince Phillip's Phirming Phials?

The French send the final unit of Russian Dragoons to the showers, courtesy of a flanking volley issued by the Chasseurs of the Old Guard (see line facing to the right in the distance, with absent Russian Dragoon regiment!

Renard's (John) Old Guard Grenadier battalion ejects the Russian defenders from the church at the point of he Bayonet.

The remainder of Renard's infantry surges forward, threatening the position of the (unloaded) Russian artillery. 

Belier's light cavalry charge home into the silenced Russian battery and two Russian battalions in line at the edge of the woods. 

Overview of the battlefield from the French Left.

Sensing victory, the French in the woods at last advance to further pressure the Russians. Many volleys are exchanged!

The French light cavalry charge has destroyed the opposing battery and one infantry battalion, while the other battalion falls back in disorder. Only the lone square is effectively protecting the left flank of the Russian Army. 

Close up of the aftermath of the French charge. 
"Now THAT'S what I call Le maneuvre sur les Derrieres, boys!" quips General Faucon. 

General Badenov has had enough. He orders his Corps to disengage. He has been battered badly this day, but the French have yet to contend with General Winter...

    For his part, General Faucon is content to let the Russians withdraw and preserve as many of his men as possible. It is, after all, a long way from Paris and replacements are hard to come by. Besides, if his Majesty doesn't see fit to reward him with a Marshal's baton, one could at least hope for for a title or two, with a nice annual stipend. Vive l' Empereur!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Helenistic Command Figures

In setting up the forces for the big To the Strongest! Punic Wars game that I am to run for Jared's middle school game club later this month, it became apparent that I needed some more General figures. 

With this deficiency already in mind, I had ordered the Old Glory "Hellenistic High Command" set in my first order with the Army Card last year.

They could be used for either Carthage or Greek/Macedonian armies. 

Although 6 shields were provided, only the one figure on the right seemed designed to be carrying a shield. I wanted some simple design, so I went with the Triangle, the Greek letter Delta. Back in college, I belonged to the honorary band fraternity, Kapp Kapp Psi (KKY). The circular rim of the shield sort of equates to the Greek letter Omicron, and our chapter was Delta Omicron. 

The sculptor seemed a bit thin on imagination when it came to poses, eh? Four out of the six figures have there right hands raised in a fist. "Curse you, Red Baron!"

We do at least get one figure pointing, and with his left hand at that! Didn't your mother ever teach you it was rude to point?

The figure on the white horse has a sort of nifty panther skin horse furniture.

I had actually mostly painted the horses for these figures about 6 months ago, but  shifting priorities meant that I didn't get to the riders until now. And what is with the pose of the figure on the right? "More troops?  And where do you expect me to get them from? Am I supposed to make them/'? 
Of course, *we* can always paint more...

Monday, January 8, 2018

LANNES Campaign: Set up for game 5 - The Battle of Wheeling, 1812

Part of Warplan 5/5 Card 12A; the atlas indicates that the distict is firm grazing land with fences and orchards. 

    At the conclusion of game 4 of our LANNES Campaign (Fitchwoods), [played almost 8 months ago, the determination of the next battlefield came up as 12A.14, the village of Wheeling. I recognized this location immediately, because Wheeling  was the site of the climactic battle of our very first Warplan 5/5 Campaign back circa 1971. Charlie (Red, using British figures) and I (Blue, using Bavarians and French - of course!) were allied against Paul (Green, using Russian Troops) and Chuck (Yellow, using Austrian and Westphalian troops).Charlie and I were attacking from the South,  with a significant numerical advantage, but that meant facing the walls of Fort Wheeling (12A.13) Fortunately, we had prepared for this and had our Siege train of 18 pounders  advancing through 12A 18. Meanwhile, Paul's main army was rushing to assist his ally, advancing from the East into 12A.15. 

    Notable events of the battle included Charlie's newly painted British Rocket battery shooting at Paul's lead unit, the recently painted guard Hussars, and by incredible luck managing to hit them with an air burst, causing them to rout and carry with them much of the Advance Guard of Paul's troops, and Chuck's C-in-C being severely injured and out of the battle, an event commemorated to this day by a figure in his uniform being loaded into a field ambulance! This battle was played on an 18 x 5 foot table (two ping pong tables end to end) in my parent's un-insulated attic in July, so the fighting was literally very hot indeed!

    The fort will play no role in this action, though. From the end of game rolls made according to the "pick up battle" set-up for Field of  Battle, Barry will have choice of side of deployment or orientation of the battlefield, and I will have whichever he doesn't take. I will have to deploy 2 command groups my first time laying troops out, and 1/4 of my command groups will be delayed D4 turns in arriving. As Barry noted, thus far in the campaign, if a side has had delayed troops, that side has always won!

    The status of my army at the end of the Batle of Fitchwoods is as below - as I had an advantage of 8 Morale Points at the end of the battle, I was able to modify 8 of my die rolls for unit quality upgrades, resulting in almost all units upgrading. The shaded 4 units are new reinforcements for this battle. 

Unit #Unit NameDDCDRouts CausedFinal UI lossRouted, etc?End Game Result
1Vendémiaire LineD6D12+12DD+1
2Brumaire LineD4D101CD+1
3Angoulême HussarsD8D12+112YesCD+1
4Ardennes LightD6D12+1CD+1
5Bordeaux ChasseurD8D12+1DD+1
6Chaumont HussarD8D12+1CD+1
7Vertu 6# Ft ArtilleryD6D10CD+1
8Génie 6# HAD10D12+11DD+1
9Bouches-du-Rhône GdD10D12CD+1
10Frimaire LineD4D12CD+1
11Nivôse LineD4D12+112CD+1
12Côte-d'Or Light GdD10D10CD+1
13Rhône LightD8D12+14YesDD+1
14Morvan DragoonD4D12+1CD+1
15Travail 6# FAD6D10CD+1
16Gironde LightD6D124YesCD+1
17Loire LightD4D121DD+1
18Dijon ChasseursD4D12CD+1
19Opinion 6# FAD6D122YesCD+1
20Pluviose National GdD4D8Becomes Line
21Rouen ChasseursD6D10
22Jura DragoonsD6D10
23Nord LightD4D8
24Ventose LineD6D8
GeneralNameLDSpecialHit?OutcomeYearEnd Game Result
C-in-CFrancois FauconD12-no1799NC
ASimeon SourisD8poltroonno1799Down 1
BFabien LaFermeD12Fabianno1800Up 1
C Rene RenardD12+1Fabianno1799Up 1
DHenri HibouD10Fabianno1805Down 1
EBernard BelierD10-no1807NC

Friday, January 5, 2018

2018: Hobby Plans and Goals


I really want to try to hold my hobby expenditures to $1,500 or less for 2018. My goal last year was to keep expenses under $1,000, and I failed utterly and miserably at that, spending almost 3 times that amount.  The Spanish army and unusually heavy convention related expenses were among the culprits. 


1) Finish our Lannes Napoleonic "Campaign". That was a goal for last year as well, but we only managed to do one battle!  We have three to go, and the first is now scheduled for later this month. That could set the stage for another short campaign jusing Brent Oman's "Seasons of Battle" when it is released later this year. 

2) Run a game for Jared's Middle School gaming club - this was rescheduled from December due to snow, now scheduled for the end of January. This will be a big Punic Wras game using To the Strongest!

3) Host a game at HAVOC in April if my schedule permits. We have had bad luck with snowy conditions the past few years. This would almost certainly be a game using To the Strongest, which is well suited to their =time slots and table sizes - maybe using the Hussites? 

4) Maybe participate in a big Napolenic game Jared is running for his club in March using Black Powder. 

5) Historicon Games - returning to Lancaster, a far more agreeable drive from Connecticut than Fredericksburg!  
A) The big project is the 1809 Talavera Campaign in a Day, featuring Wellesley's return to Portugal and Spain, and using Snappy Nappy. In this case, neither side will have unity of command. Some supply rules (and wagons) and Guerillas are a must, plus infighting Spanish Juntas and French Marshals!
B) Battle of Talavera itself as a game, using Field of Battle 2nd edition
C) Probably one or two games with To the Strongest!, opponents to be determined.
D) Play in Tim and/or Jared's game(s), or others!


As needed to finish my Spanish Napoleonic project - mostly command for the Line cavalry and Garochistas when they becomes available, eventually a unit of Hussars and/or Cazadores a Caballo, maybe some Perry line and/or Militia to round out the force, maybe some additional high command figures. 

Use Army card before it expires in early March to buy Highlanders, any other odds and ends needed from Old Glory..

Maybe one unit of Perry Nassau troops? I have had my eye on them for a while, and they fought (as part of the CoR) at Talvaera, along with the Frankfurters. Hot dog!

As I said last year, if my purchases stay low (which they were anything but!), I might flesh out the rest of the lead for my Eureka Tyrolian Rebellion project; that would be late in 2018 or more likely early in 2019. Of course, If Murawski releases Baden Light Dragoons and or Artillery, they will soar to the top of the "Must Have" (and must paint) list once again.


1) Finish the Spanish Napoleonic army by June so that is ready for Historicon.

2) Make a substantial dent in the huge pile of Macedonians acquired from Edgar in late 2015 (carried over from 2017 with no progress)

3) Great Italian Wars - The Essex Gendarmes, and maybe a new Pike block (carried over from 2017 with no progress).

4) Consider starting the Tyroleans in the Fall of 2018... or painting the additions to my ECW lead to be used for For King and Parliament.

5) Avoid starting any other new projects!


Keep about the same pace of posting as I have the past 3 years (circa 100 post per year().


Work on the Renaissance Galley rules - another holdover from 2017. Not likely to happen before the second half of 2018. 

Monday, January 1, 2018

2017: The Year in Review

       Another year in the books already, which means it is time for the Annual Hobby and Blog Review. Strike up the band if you will, please, sir!


October 2017
Three Armies Spanish 64#, $89
Adolfo Ramos flags  37E  $45.29
Really Useful Boxes x 7  ($25 off coupon from staples) $58.93

November 2017
Barnes and Noble 96.07  (Oman Volumes 1-2-3, Neil Thomas one Hour Wargames, 4 decks of cards.
Brigade Games 201.45   (Spanish Artillery, Cavalry, Guerrillas)

December 2017
Old Glory Order $221  (Sea Peoples Infantry (30), ECW Pikemen Montero Caps (60), ECR Musketeers Montero (30), ECW Command Unarmored (20), ECW Falling Wounded (20) and ECW Wounded (20), 3 Carts (Blue Moon), 3 large Southwestern style polyurethane foam rocks).

4th QUARTER TOTAL  $652.81

3RD QUARTER TOTAL  $1,151.97

2ND QUARTER TOTAL:  $578.73  

1st QUARTER TOTAL = $523.47

2017 TOTAL + $ 2,906.98

(Way over budget, probably the most hobby spending ever for me in a single year)

Oman's History, Volume 1. I couldn't bring myself to pay for ta hardcover edition, espwecially considering there are something like 9 volumes!

From the Battle of Coruna to the end of the Talavera Campaign.

For some reason not titled as volume 3, but so it is! I also have no ides what the names of the other gentleman are doing on the front cover, as other  than as perhaps series advisers, there is not a word from them within. 

I have been meaning to pick this one up for some time, and with the 25% off sale at Barnwes and Noble, it was a go.  My rationale for acquiring this book was first and foremost the scenario ideas, and then the possibility that it might prove useful should I be able to interest either or both of my two grandsons in the Hobby a few years hence. 

Needed some more card decks for To the strongest! with different backs, and at 25% off...


Guerrillas from the Brigade Games order, taking full advantage of their Black Friday sale!

Un poco Guerillas mas!

Spanish Dragoon command, newly released at Fall In!

Enough Dragoons for a 2nd unit, in different poses.

Enough Spanish Line Cavalry for a 2nd unit, but still awaiting release of their Command pack.

Garochista Lancers x 6...  also awaiting release of command figures. 

Cannon from Brigade games - 2 x 12#, 2 x Howitzers, 4 x 6#
2 more sets of Artillerymen were also acquired. 


From the Old Glory order. When I was perusing the OG site, I stumbled upon a listing for "Three Brown Polyurethane Rocks", painted for $50. With the Army Card discount, that's just $30, or about 7.50 each. Sold! 

While obviously intended for Skirmish gaming in the American Southwest, I intend to use them for Hill terrain for my Chariot era armies. The bright blue "water" will probably be replaced with black or dark brown. 

These will fit in one or two 6" boxes for To the Strongest!

OG order - these ECW troops, mostly in Montero caps, will be used to add some scruffy, raw units to my ECW collection, in anticipation of the release of Simon and Andrew's ECW rules. Brent Oman's Field of Battle based ECW rules are also due out soon, and they will work just as well with that, too. I may need to add a bit more cavalry as well. My Card doesn't expire for another 2 months.  Hnmmm...

A minor expansion for the anti-Egyptian alliance, plus some (Blue Moon) carts... about $12.50 each with The Card.  What might I have in mind for those?


January 2017
16 British Hussars (Old Glory)   160 pts
Total 240 pts

February 2017
24 Canaanite Spearmen (12 rehab, 12 new) (? Foundry)  90 pts
1 Sphinx  30 pts
24 Spearmen (rehab) (? Foundry Hyskos)  60 pts
12 Bowmen (rehab) (? Foundry ? Hyskos) 30 pts
8 Slingers (rehab) (? Foundry)  20 pts
27 Hitite Axemen (rehab) (? Foundry)  68 pts
8 KGL Light Cavalry (Old Glory)  80 pts
Total 378 pts

March 2017
9 Assyrian LC (BTD)    90 pts
10 Canaanite Chariots (Rehab)  175 pts
2 new Canaanite officers  10 pts
9 Jugs
8 Prussian Landwehr Cavalry (Old Glory)  80 pts
Total 355 pts

1st Quarter Total = 973 points

April 2017
None completed

May 2017
Assyrian HC (Foundry) 6 figures  = 60 pts
Assyrian Heavy Chariots (Hinchliffe) 4 = 220 pts 

June 2017
Palmyran Archers (Old Glory)  12 = 60 pts
4 Units Imperial Roman Infantry (Black tree Designs)  48 = 240 pts

July 2017
Sassanid Archers 24, Sassanid Spearmen 24, Sassanid  Leaders 4, Sassanid Kataphtactoi 6, Roman Auxillia 12, Palmyran Archers 12, Palmyran Regular Light Cavalry 8, Roman Archers 12, Palmyran Irregular Light Cavalry 8, Palmyran Leaders 4, Imperial Roman Generals 6 = 720 pts

August 2017
Tehenu Libyan Archers and Leaders 30, Philistine Javelinmen and Leaders 30 = 300 pts

September 2017
Spanish Napoleonic Line Infantry "Valencia" 18 = 90 pts

October 2017
Spanish Napoleonic Line Infantry "Reina", Burgos", "Guadalajara", 54 = 270 pts

November 2017
Voluntarios de Madrid (Militia), Voluntarios de Navarra (Militia), CVazadores "!st barcelona", Cazadotres "Gerona"  72 = 360 pts

December 2017
Voluntarios de Castilla (Line), Ordones Militario (Line), Sevilla (Line), Converged Grenadiers (72), Roman Legion (12) = 420 pts

4TH QUARTER TOTAL:  1,050 pts

3RD QUARTER TOTAL:  1,110 pts

2nd QUARTER TOTAL:  580 pts

1st QUARTER TOTAL:  973 pts

2017 TOTAL: 3,713 points

I'd say 4,000 points is probably about the most I could ever do in a year. There was no painting in April as that was the month that my office moved and I had to crash learn and transition to using a new Electronic Health Record in the office. As I knew from the first time I implemented a new EHR 10 years ago, it took 6 months for my hours worked to return back down to normal. No wonder most physicians have a love/hate relationship with their EHR's!  Even better is that I get to do it again in 2 months... ugh! 


January - March 2017  - nil.

April: Ran Egypt vs Assyria with To the Strongest at HAVOC, Ran and played in Grossbeeren 1813 at HAVOC with Snappy Nappy, Assisted with and played in 1809 Italian Campaign in a Day with Snappy Nappy

May: Battle of Fitchwoods from our Lannes Napoleonic Campaign with Field of Battle, 2nd ed.

June: None

July 2017 (Historicon)  Ran Palmyra vs Sassanids with To the Strongest!, Ravenna 1512 with Hostile Realms, Raab 1809 with Field of Battle 2nd edition, Egypt vs Assyria with To the Strongest!; played in Reichenberg using Piquet: Cartouche 

August 2017: Ran/played in The Alliance of Baal with To the Strongest!

September 2017:  None

October 2017:  Lessie's Moor with For King and Parliament! (final playtest version)

December 2017:  None. I was scheduled to run a big Ancient game for Jared's middle school game club in early December, but we got snowed out. Now reschedule for January. 

TOTAL:  10 games played and/or run. Still under goal of 1 per month. 

Our good friends love history and thus "get" my hobby, so when they saw the local hobby store was selling off their inventory of Ospreys at a steep discount, they stepped in! This looks quite interesting from skimming through it already.


There seems

to be a

Peninsular theme

to Christmas this year!

They actually visited Shrewsbury a number of years back. 

Light reading.

Back to the Peninsula once again!

A very happy, prosperous and healthy
 New Year 
 to all my readers, friends, & fellow bloggers!