Tag Archives: Peninsular

Spanish Dragoons

Recently my collection has been growing in too many areas as once again, I have been drawn into looking through the “to be painted pile”. To be fair these have been sat on my painting shelf for the last 4 months partly done but I finally dragged myself away from other areas to finish them.

I think the issue was how to paint Yellow, a lot of it and yet still look good? After a few false starts I settled on “Miniature Paints’ – Mustard” with a wash of Army Painter strong wash.

They are from the Elite Miniatures range and they were bought to go with my Spanish collection. The figures are not some of the best I have ever seen from Elite but they are the only ones they make. The choice of pose is poor; one officer, musician, standard and trooper. The detail on the trooper is less defined, when compared to their normal quality.

Numancia Dragoon Regiment

Like most Spanish dragoons the uniform was Yellow, a lot of yellow. Trousers, jackets with red turn backs, waistcoats. The only distinction was the facing colours on the collar, cuffs and lapels. In this case Black. Saddle cloth and pistol holders in yellow with white edging. Bicorn black edged in white with red cockade and plume.

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Filed under Elite, Elite Miniatures, Napoleonics, Peninsular, Reviews, Traders, Uniforms

August’s Game – Like a lot of Brits we went to Spain.

I had received a request for a Napoleonic game. Steve had only played Napoleonics once before so I decided on an engagement battle with the British having the added task of trying to secure an point of entry. As was normal in the Peninsula, the British were outnumbered in cavalry but had their new secret weapon, Congreve Rockets! and hopefully the promised assistance of the local Spanish Commander, who assured the British he would be there as soon as he could.

The terrain was laid out. The British were to come on from the main south road (A) with a small advance force having held the hill line. The French were able to come on along the whole length of their edge. Both flanks had been secured with cavalry although poor leader abilities may mean that the cavalry may not be as active as the French commander (Steve) may like.

The Rules

Our own set ” King George Commands And We Obey”  KGCAWO.

The Forces

French OOBBritish OOB

The Map

the game was 10×6

Map

How it went

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The French came on to the table in a confident manner securing both flanks. Their brigade of infantry that started on the far right flank began to advance upon an increasingly isolated British light dragoons, who patiently awaited the arrival of the Portuguese brigade.

The Portuguese decided to support the Light dragoons by taking up residence in the village of Blanco Aqua which spanned the river.

The French columns of Grenadiers, eager to get to grips with the British started to advance upon the brigade holding the hill line. In fact they were so keen to engage they started to pull away from the rest of the French army. They had out-marched in particular the brigade next to them, who were in mixed order. The British gunners on the hill spotted them and switched to them as a target (No skirmish screen to protect). Worst still, although not sure for who they had drawn the attention of the rocket troop!  With a mighty whoosh the rockets screamed into the air. Nathan’s dice throwing allowed the rocket to head on a straight path towards the target, at least for a while. Then, all of a sudden the rocket started to turn, back upon itself heading towards the foot gunners on the hill. Luckily for them the last die Nathan threw was a 1 and so the rocket came down just short of the crew, forcing them and another two British units the rocket had flown over to test. Luckily all survived unharmed but it did mean that once the laughing had finished the French commanded commented that it may be a lethal weapon on shaky troops, if only it would fly correctly.

The French right wing cavalry engaged and destroyed the light dragoons but were driven off from getting closer to the village by some accurate fire from the Portuguese inside the village. It was at this time things were starting to get tense in the centre. The French had been steadily advancing upon the British with minimal casualties. The deployed light regiments in front of the attack columns really paid off. This was not true from the French Grenadiers who had suffered terribly. Luckily for hem the French left wing cavalry had managed to advance in support and this in turn had force the British heavy dragoons to retire and forced the end British line unit into square.

The next turn a fate/ fortune card revealed a previously unknown ford in the river. Whoever’s action card was drawn next decided where they thought the ford was and on a 4-6 it was there. The next card out was French Light Cavalry Division, they identified the river area between the town and the hill and threw a 6. This allowed them to advance through the river and threaten the British centre!

The French centre were in melee with their columns against Picton’s brigade. Only stout defending managing to save the day. With the light cavalry ready to pick off the remaining British, accurate and timely fire from artillery and the Portuguese in the town convinced the cavalry they may have advanced too far.

The Game was declared a British minor victory. What happened to the Spanish Commander. well he could arrive on any turn after the 8th turn. This came and went, as did the 9th, 10th and 11th. He never managed to get a way from his mistress in time to get to the battle!

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Filed under KGCAWO, Napoleonic, Napoleonics, Peninsular, Scenarios, Wargame Rules

Legionary 14 – Vimeiro

What a manic Friday, the show was on the Saturday. I started by laying the terrain out on the decking to get a view of the 12 x 6 table.

Vimeiro Battlefield

Vimeiro Battlefield

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Ventosa

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Vimeiro with orange orchard

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Vimeiro

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Then I packed it all away ready for the next day.

Legionary is a great local show. How many other shows can you drive to within a couple of feet of your table. We drove in and unpacked and set up.

Solignac’s troops

French right wing under Solignac

French right wing under Solignac with the village of Toledo in the background

Thomiere and Charlot’s troops in column with skirmishers deployed. In the background you can see Kellermans reserve Grenadiers. Just out of shot are St Clair’s Grenadiers. In the background you can see Junot and the Army Guns.

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French left- Thomiere and Charlot with Kellerman’s Grenadiers in Reserve

British Centre – Troops hold the hill.

British Centre

British Centre

British Right with Anstruther and Fane

Holding on to the high ground just out side Vimeiro. 95th formed up in the background.

Anstruther in the foreground with Fane in the background

Anstruther in the foreground with Fane in the background

20th Light Dragoons shelter in the gap between Vimeiro and the ridge.

20th Light Dragoons

20th Light Dragoons

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British Centre

What follows is hopefully an account of the game. The card drawn is identified and anything significant that happened!

Turn 1

St Clair – General advance skirmishers  8″ and columns 6″ towards Fane on the hill.

French Army gun – fire at the British artillery on the far right (Anstruther) they C class (5) with die modifiers  +1 First shot, -1 Long range 38″, -1 smoothbore and -1 Target artillery.  These meant they needed a 7+ to hit. they rolled a 1,2 and a 6. Sadly no hits. British started to mock the French gunners offering their grannies to show them how to do it! Smoke is placed in front of guns, not just to enhance the visual but to remind us they have lost the 1st fire bonus. this is removed either as an action or reload card drawn.

Kellerman– General advance skirmishers  8″ and columns 6″ towards Fane/Anstruther on the hill.

Nightingale – Advanced down the spine of the hill to hold the high ground.

Fane – Hold steady

Delaborde – He actions Thomiere who advances across the table.

Bowes – advances and secure the left flank of Nightingale’s advance.

Junot – With his 24″ command range and line of sight he actions Charlot, Thomiere, St Clair, Kellerman who all advance. For some the second activation of the turn. The Army gun get to fire again needing an 8 due to having already fired therefore losing the 1st fire bonus. They roll 1,4 and 8 so 1 hit. this is not saved but the British pass their morale and do not go shaken. French taunt the British about their Grannies turning up!  Junot cannot action Solignac as Toledo is blocking site and distance is too far. Deployment is all about command.

Solignac – General advance

Fate/Fortune – 2D6 rolled one tens the other units. 24 rolled. This resulted in the next divisional or brigade commander  ignoring their direct commander as they can do better. Both side understood the impact the card could have.

Charlot – General advance there were now within 12″ of the British right flank. But they now ignore any orders from Loison.

Anstruther – Unleash fire on the skirmishers of Charlot from skirmishers and canister from the gun. Skirmishers take 2 hits and fail to save either. They do pass their morale though.

20th L. Dragoons – These advance cautiously to the front of the hill level with Vimeiro.

End of Turn – card drawn. All cards return to pack and shuffled.

Turn 2

Kellerman – advance but concerned about the 20th Light Dragoons? Would they make it if their card is drawn?

Delaborde – Activated Thomiere and brings Brennier on to the table.

Solignac – Starts to advance up the hill into the face of Nightingale.

Wellesley – from his vantage point on the hill and a 48″ command range, he activates, Fane, Ackland, Nightingale and Bowes with Anstruther and Ferguson out of range. Solignac’s columns take a few hits. It is easier to hit those columns.

Margaron – these advance on to the table.

Fane – they fire at the skirmishers and wipe them out.

Loison – Charlot ignores him so he orders Solignac up the hill and on towards Nightingale.

Ackland – 95th skirmishers advance into the vineyard and secure the boundary.

Charlot – Skirmish screen attempt to charge the artillery of Anstruther. Big mistake. Crew decide to stand and fire. They roll 3 D6 and score 1,1,2 so fire at a range of 4″. Charge range was 8″ so they can. Canister wipes them out.

Bowes – Expresses concern over the appearance of Margaron.

Anstruther – all open fire and inflict a few hits on the columns of Charlot.

Nightingale – Advances down the spine towards Solignac’s advancing columns.

Ferguson – Artillery fire at Margaron inflicting 1 casualty on the 4th Dragoons, who fail their morale.

End of Turn – card drawn. All cards return to pack and shuffled.

4th dragoons

4th Dragoons

Margaron's cavalry

Margaron’s cavalry

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Ferguson’s Brigade

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Solignac’s units advancing up on to the ridge heading towards Nightingale

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Anstruther’s brigade unleash their fire on the advancing columns

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Fanes skirmishers having retired through the 95th allow them to open fire on the columns getting a little too close.

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Nightingale’s fire upon Solignac’s units

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Anstruther’s second activation allows them to fire on the advancing columns.

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Acland’s 95th skirmishers occupy the vinyard

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Kellerman’s grenadiers continue their advance

Turn 3

Wellesley – Charges the 20th light dragoons towards Kellerman’s Grenadiers. Grenadiers attempt to form square. They have enough time as cavalry are more than 6″ away. they roll morale and pass. They form square. Cavalry are moved 12″ and end up 2″ short. A lax moment for Wellesley.

Nightingale – Open fire on the advancing columns and cause enough casualties to remove a column.

Crauford – Portuguese arrive on the table. They reinforce the left flank next to Ferguson.

End of Turn – card drawn. All cards return to pack and shuffled.

 

 

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Kellerman’s Grenadiers form square

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Margaron’s cavalry

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95th unleash a devastating volley into the advancing columns.

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Crauford’s Portuguese

Turn 4

Charlot – pushing on to the guns with his columns and no skirmish protection.

Ferguson – opens fire on Margaron again with little effect.

Solignac – opens fire and clears Nightingale’s skirmishers.

Bowes – reinforces the gap between Ferguson and the advancing Nightingale.

End of Turn – card drawn. All cards return to pack and shuffled.

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British left flank opening up on Margaron.

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Solignac’s artillery fire on Nightingale causing casualties on his skirmishers.

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The view from behind Nightingale with Bowes in support

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Wellesley surveys the battlefield.

Turn 5

Nightingale – inflicts a few more casualties on the columns who now fail there more and grind to a halt unable to charge in.

Delaborde – Activates Thomiere and his columns chare into the 95th of Fane. In the following melee 95th take a casualty but the column receive 2 saving none they are removed.

Kellerman – Grenadiers stay in square but fire on 20th L. dragoons inflicting a hit which is not saved. Following morale check causes 20th to become shaken. French cheer.

Fate/Fortune – 11 rolled. commander sees the light!

Anstruther – I thought I heard the French commander let out a sigh. Anstruther, already in a strong position has his command increased to exceptional. Cannon fire and take another casualty off a column.

Junot – activates all commanders in the centre in one last charge. All units shaken test morale and all recover. the British player takes a deep swallow.

Brennier – tries to gee up his infantry following having been just activated by Junot.

St Clair – Grenadiers get in and engage with the 97th inflicting 1 casualty without receiving any. 97th pass morale and hold.

Fane – 95th engage with remaining column. They receive a casualty but inflict one as well. The column is removed and the 95th are on the edge. they have only 1 strength point left.

Charlot – Engages cannon and takes them.

Too week to do any more serious damage  the French player concedes the day. the British player very happy to accept as a few of his units are near breaking point.

 

 

All agreed it had been a good day and the rules worked well, although they were still unsure about units not being able to be activated. I proposed that when the end of turn card is drawn, all units not activated can fire but may not move or change formation. Units can still not be rallied unless activated. I will amend some of the fate rolls to represent artillery with incorrect ammo. This would help with issues like the artillery at Bunker hill etc.

They like the speed units can get engaged rather than playing for a few hours before getting into contact and really got to understand the importance of commanders being in the right places. they all agreed that the fate card is great as it can add a twist in the tail to any great plan.

This was the first time both players had used them or played this era.

Due to the  ease of play and speed of play we had plenty of time to go shopping.

if you get the chance please give Legionary a go. Great traders, easy parking (free), friendly organisers and a  good selection of games.

Have a look out for some photos of our game in Wargames Illustrated as their photographer took a few for the magazine.

 

Hopefully see you next year.

 

 

I will amend the rules to version 2 soon and go through an few more examples to help explain my rationale behind them.

 

Hope you enjoy the pictures and write up.

 

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Filed under Battle Of Vimeiro, Demo game, KGCAWO, Legionary Wargame Show, Napoleonics, Peninsular, Scenarios, Wargame Rules

Unit markers for KGCAWO rules

Please find below a copy of the unit markers for the Battle of Vimeiro.

I think they are self explanatory.

You have the ratings for Fire/ Melee/ Morale  weapon type and wounds (OOOO) which is for a large unit of 4 strength points. Most have 3 and an S = Shaken. These are coloured in when appropriate so the status and strength of a unit is clear at all times.

We laminate and then colour them in with a erasable marker as the game progresses so literally no other paperwork. Wipe clean afterwards for the next refight.

I will try to do these markers for all scenarios if anyone is interested.

 

 Vimeiro Battle Labels

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Filed under America 1812, American war Independence, Battle of Bladensburg, Battle of Crysler's Farm, Battle of Lundy's Lane, Battle of New Orleans, Battle of Queenston Heights, Battle of the River Thames, Demo game, KGCAWO, Legionary Wargame Show, Napoleonics, Peninsular, Scenarios, Wargame Rules

King George Commands and We Obey

Having wargamed for far too many years to mention, it finally dawned on me how much money and time I have spent rebasing armies or learning a new set of rules. With that in mind I decided a few years ago to find a style of rules that I liked and base all my future rule sets and armies it.

My key requirements are:

      • I spend a large amount of time and money collecting units. I decided I wanted them to stay on the table long enough for people to see, therefore no casualty removal.
      • I hate the “my turn/your turn” approach. With that in mind I use a card based turn system. I first used this in my Dad’s army game. Depending upon the level of game you are playing, a playing card is allocated to each unit or in larger games brigade commanders and above. This also means turns are not all the same as an end of turn card can come up at any time.
      • They have to be easy to learn. The common approach should assist with this and it is then just about the era specifics.
      • As little paperwork as possible. Most units have a small tab on a base. This contains all the information you need so no other paperwork, in most cases. This could of course be kept separately rather than attached but I think in a demo game it also allows visitors to see which units are representing which.
      • Enjoyable. I am not too serious and enjoy a light hearted approach at times to rules. Have a look at my rocket rules. While they may be a little slow to enact, imagine the gasps as rockets snake across the field. You never really know where they will end up!

I like to discuss issues arising. One of the biggest challenges is for “serious” Wargamers is to look past their unit not getting activated and not firing, moving or engaging in melee. I remember in one game, a player arguing that units should always have an action. This came about due to the fact that in the first 3 turns his British artillery’s activation card had not been drawn. What rubbish he argued and most others started to agree after a while. I then raised the point of the British artillery at the battle of Bunker Hill. Not many were familiar with the battle but the British artillery could not fire for a while as the wrong ammo had been made available. This impacted upon their ability to join in the battle at a key moment and affect the outcome. How could you ever build that potential impact in to a set of rules?

Most of the players started to appreciate the idea behind the card system. The British player finally supported it fully as Lancers appeared on his flank only to be too far deployed from their commander to be activated. This gave him the chance to form square next turn and live to fight another day. I appreciate it is not for all but I love it.

With this in mind I offer my set of rules called KING GEORGE COMMANDS AND WE OBEY. They are suitable for the American War of Independence, Napoleonic Peninsular and the American War of 1812. Some aspects may be familiar and some not so. Ideas have come from so many rule sets I have collected over the years.

I hope you find something you like; if not then I hope they encourage discussion.

If you would like to see them in action then please come along to Legionary 14, Exeter, on the 3rd of May  where we will be presenting the battle of Vimeiro.

I will add some more scenarios over next few months.

Enjoy!

 KGCAWO rules

 

 

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Filed under America 1812, American war Independence, Battle of Bladensburg, Battle of Crysler's Farm, Battle of Lundy's Lane, Battle of New Orleans, Battle of Queenston Heights, Battle of the River Thames, Demo game, KGCAWO, Legionary Wargame Show, Napoleonics, Peninsular, Scenarios, Wargame Rules

Vimeiro built – but not quite in a day

Just a quick update

Have finished the town of Vimeiro. Over the last few weeks I have finally finished putting it all together. The buildings are based on those shown in the “Touching History” series of books on building terrain for Wargamers and were built by best mate Brian Collins. This is the biggest town in the game with a couple of smaller villages elsewhere. These are still to be built.  It is made up from 3 off 8″x8″ bases. In my rules, built up areas (BUA) are made up from these bases. 1 for a small village, 2 for a larger village 3+ for a town. Each base will normally have 2 building on it and each building can hold  an infantry regiment and BUAs are cleared fighting one regiment/building at a time.

Vimeiro 5

Vimeiro 5

Vimeiro 4

Vimeiro 4

Vimeiro 3

Vimeiro 3

Vimeiro 2

Vimeiro 2

Vimeiro 1

Vimeiro 1

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Filed under Demo game, Legionary Wargame Show, Napoleonics, Peninsular, Terrain

Legionary Countdown – Vimeiro

With Christmas over I have turned my attention back to preparing the game for Legionary, Exeter on the 3rd May 2014.

Have finally decided the organisation of the armies. They are shown below.

French Order of Battle

British Order of Battle

British Order of Battle

Following a review and some rebasing over the Christmas period I have the following units still to complete.

1 off French Chasseur Regiment

1 off French Dragoon Regiment

1 off Regiment of Grenadiers

1 off French Foot Battery

1 off British 71st Foot

Below are some of the units completed over Christmas.

Dragoons (Front Rank)

Dragoons (Front Rank)

Legere regiment

Legere regiment

Junot ( Foundry)

Junot ( Foundry) picked up on Ebay

Have still got the terrain to build but the rules are nearly done so they will be here soon.

Will try to update more often going forward.

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Filed under Demo game, Gallery, Legionary Wargame Show, Napoleonics, Peninsular