EXERT FROM APPENDIX 1 from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers
(The book that got me started.)

"Nothing in these pages is a dictate, no word says you must or you shall do it this way. On the contrary, the book sets out from the very beginning to stimulate the reader to think for himself, and to use what he has read merely as a foundation for efforts and ideas which reflect his own temperament and character. Only in this way will he obtain maximum satisfaction from the hobby of battling with model soldiers."

-Don Featherstone 1918 - 2013

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Forged in Fire

I had time for a quick game today. I decided that it was time to get back on the grid and to deploy some toys that had been idle too long.

Green arrives on turn 4 to find Grey already deployed.
The choice fell on the Great War and the as yet untested Dinky Light Tank. Since the setting is several decades too early, I just classed it as an armoured car. After all I was actually looking for an affordable 1/43 Rollsroyce when I stumbled on this and couldn't resist. I was in the mood for a meeting engagement and almost set out Sawmill Village when I remembered Crossroads from Programmed Scenarios which I have rarely if ever played solo. The rules were the Square Brigadier.

I took command of Green Force with 1 squadron of cavalry, 1 Armoured car, 4 infantry companies, 1 MG company, 1 Mountain Battery and 1 Field Artillery Battery for a total of 9 units, all arriving on the West Road on Turn 4.  Grey Force was programmed. The dice indicated that a column with  1 cavalry squadron, 2 Jaeger and 1 MG company and 1 Field Battery would arrive on the SouthEast Road on Turn 3 while another squadron, 4 companies of infantry and another MG would arrive on the Southwest Road on Turn 5. Their orders were to deploy before advancing.

...hmm..wait a minute! They had 2 more companies than me! I thought I fixed that but the sneaky buggers fooled me and snuck 2 companies back in!  No wonder I was having a hard time.

Steel plate helps but its not invulnerable, especially against artillery and machine guns. The Dink pulls back to regroup.

It took about an hour of alternating hope and  fear to play the game to a draw. I really could have used at least another battalion a side and a few more turns.... but this was exactly the sort of quick affair that the Square Brigadier was meant for though and I like how the grid and rules work for this period and scale of game as opposed to earlier horse and musket era battles. I rather like The Tin Army name though.  I should make sure there is still a written copy of the 20thC version as played today though since I went entirely by memory.

Turn 15. Grey has taken heavier losses but isn't broken. Control of the crossroads and its approaches is still disputed. A hard fought draw then.

This cries out for a refight before I rest the table. Not sure yet if I want to add a few more troops and a few more turns then play again or bring out another set of toys that need exercise.

11 comments:

  1. Glad to see you using those lovely figures not to mention the grid.
    I have just bought some hexon and am keen to try it with the 40mm semi flats to see how the game compares with my squared grid...

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    1. I would think that for anything after 1865ish a hex grid should work well.

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  2. Are those lancers home casts? They are very fine.

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    1. They are a favorite of mine.
      The bodies were converted from homecast Zinnbrigade 1900 Prussian Hussars with lances with heads from my original Baluch infantry. The main conversion bit was lengthening the dolman into a khurta for 1881 but they have since been repainted khaki with cartridge belt added. The horses are from a Zinnbrigade Napoleonic dragoon horse. .

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  3. I agree with CK. The lancers and the Indian troops look right beside the tankette, somehow. Could be interwar, could be Mesopotamia 1917 (though your table is all wrong for that). :)

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    1. The Indian army did send a Corps to France in October '14 which is my excuse but the tankette of course is early. One day I hope to add terrain and opposition for the Caucasus or maybe the 3rd Afghan war etc.

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  4. Great report! It looks and sounds fun and has that "old school" look (in the best way).

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    1. I confess, I do like these guys, they remind me of my grandfather.

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  5. Ross Mac,

    I love the look of your figures and the light tank fits in so well with them. Every time I read one of your battle reports I am tempted to set aside what I am currently working on and to buy some 40mm figures. At present I am just about resisting ... but I'm not sure that how long I will manage to hold out!

    All the best,

    Bob

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  6. 40mm certainly has a charm ROSS, with the advantage that you can fit a lot more onto the Games table than the larger 54mm -if ever I return to War Gaming - it will be for 40mm Sculpting and Casting. Regards. KEV.

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