Monday 24 September 2018

A Few Good Men - and Yarkshire Gamer

When I started this project I made the conscious decision to do the command stands quickly, to get a game on the table, by making them one figure strong. My future plan was to make the command stands two or more figures strong. This would involve re-basing, but hey ho............. 

Seeing a heap of painting to do if I delayed the upgrade any longer the future arrived very quickly. I've added twelve new command figures to the stack and I've rebased all but one of my command figures; the latter is the British officer of engineers - a 'command special' - and I'm sure there will be one or two more of these 'scenario officers' for each side in the future. 

From now on I'll do command figures as their 'brigades' and 'divisions' come on line. I'm still considering the make up of the C-in-C stands - food for though, indeed.

The command elements available now look like this.

Talking of a few good men, Ken, the Yarkshire gamer came over on Friday for a thoroughly enjoyable Italian Wars game. 

For rules, we used my home grown version of FoB  (Hell Broke Loose) for the Italian Wars and, of course, they threw up one of those situations that only Piquet style games can.

Ken's Swiss pike came up to contact with the Spanish foot and he desperately sought a Melee Resolution card. I was desperately worried because Swiss are virtually unstoppable after contact. But, before it came up I drew, back to back, four Missile Reload cards for my Spanish colunelas. Under a hail of lead previously unseen in my games, the three Swiss pike squares were forced to withdraw each having taken their maximum 7 Unit Intregrity loss before pikes crossed. Such is life.

To his credit, Ken kept going. He brought his cavalry, having been victorious on his right, into the fray to restore the balance but at zero morale, the Army Morale card took its inevitable toll. 

A victory to me, courtesy of one of those card runs you can usually dream of.

I hope the encounter encourages Ken to paint up more Italian Wars stuff of his own. I hope that he tries Hell Broke Loose rules again. He's certainly welcome to come back again, and lose here, anytime.

Wednesday 19 September 2018

Latest additions - Legion Hannovrienne and Du Midi

As mentioned in my last post, these additions were advertised as on the way. Consequently, a very short post on their addition to the muster. Tonight they will go up against the enemy and will no doubt roll a series of ones - well they will do, if Peter gets them.

Legion Hannovrienne. 

This was a legere unit but it wore 'long habit' coat with 'elite company distinctions. Consequently, I have used 'elite company' ligne figures. 

The grenadiers wore bearskins.

Historically, this unit was only five companies strong and lacked a company of voltigeurs.

Not one to count heads, especially as campaign strength frequently differed from 'establishment', I have kept the faith with the 'twenty-four man unit'.

I have to say that French uniform, regardless of colour, has something stylish about it. 

I love French in red. French in red, and not Swiss, very cool.
My Legion Du Midi - A legere unit - caveate emptor

The Grenadiers wore bearskins and the other rank and file wore a long 'habit' coat so I chose to use 'elite company ligne' figures. 

It was only at the latter stage of painting that I realised I had no reference for shako cords. This might mean they didn't have them; it might mean there is no reference to them on campaign. Consequently, because my figures had shako cords, I took a punt on white for chasseurs and green for voltigeurs. This might be very wrong, but I'm not sure, and hey ho, mine do now.

One thing I did have to do, and did, was remove all the tall plumes for the chasseur companies and add a carrot top addition to the round pom poms.

It's a pity I didn't notice, or rather take note of, the lack of cords in the pictures I was looking at before I started.

Saturday 15 September 2018

Peninsular War - New additions

Having thoroughly enjoyed actually playing with my Napoleonic troops for the first time, my Peninsular project painting mojo has returned. So, in between painting commissioned work, I've managed to slot in a few extra hours to do some additional troops for myself.

Fully finished, are two battalions of Portuguese line infantry, a unit of Cazadores and a battery of French foot artillery. Painted by yours truly using enamels.

Front view of the 21st Line (Valenza). 

I'm a big fan of blue and yellow as a colour combination so it was an obvious choice to do battalions from the Northern Division. 

Figures are by Front Rank, flags by GMB Designs. 
Rear view of the 9th Line (Viana). 

This regiment was historically brigaded with the 21st. It too has yellow facings, but the 9th's collar is only piped yellow rather than being solid yellow like the 21st. 

I found these Portuguese a doddle to paint in comparison to their British brethren. 
The 2nd Cazadores (Algarve); picked purely for having a bit of red (cuffs). 

Figures by Front Rank.

I have decided to paint my Cazadores as units of 16 figures. Because I'm not a bean counter I decided to do what feels about right for game use. Eight bases of skirmishers looks about right to me. 
I'm convinced that these guys most often fought in skirmish order; I really don't know if this belief is based on historical fact; I've only ever painted them (for others) as rifle armed skirmishers. 

As two thirds were actually armed with muskets I'm open to be persuaded otherwise - though this will entail buying more figures - so that they can fight in line, in a similar fashion to British light infantry. 

Please, feel free to advise.
A battery French foot artillery. Figures by Front Rank.

In the first game I found that a single limber was quite sufficient for representing a battery on the move and liked the look of them very much. Despite the cost - limbers equate to a fair lump of money (£17.20 +) and painting time for a thing which is just there to look good - I will provide a limber for each and every battery.

Although I haven't photographed it yet, I've also painted the Legion Hannovrienne for the French force, and I'm midway through painting a battalion of Legion Du Midi. Once they've been finished I'll post some pics: I need both units and a dozen new command figures for a game on Wednesday night so they'll be pictured soon, hopefully.

These additional units would normally make a dent in the lead pile, but following another delivery from Front Rank (following an investment using money from the sale of the Libyan spearmen units ) I find myself with more than I started with - I've added two units of cavalry, a unit of British light infantry, a full unit of 95th Rifles, two units of Polish Legion, 2 units of 2nd Nassau, and a bunch of general officers and other odds and sods to increase the size of several units. Let's hope the mojo lasts the distance.