Monday, July 6, 2020

Assault on Nor'East Ridge: The Wargame

I hadn't planned to play a game on Saturday but as we had a late outdoor lunch on a cool, overcast, day, a day with no shadows, conditions seemed just right. Anyway I needed another game to confirm the rules revision sparked by the last outside game. (The 5th impromptu test game in 4 days, I love retirement!)
Here they come! 
Naturally, by the time lunch was cleared away and the troops deployed, the skies had also cleared, a burning hot sun was shining from behind the redcoat defence line and I was starting to sizzle in turn. Still, duty called!

Dominion (Red) forces: General + 1 Brigadier with 4 companies of infantry manning rifle pits along the crest with 1 company in reserve, a Naval Gatling dug in on the extreme left of the line, a field gun and a hospital.

Rebel (Blue) forces: General + 3 Brigadiers with 12 companies of infantry and 2 field guns.
Balloon's Eye view of the Rebel lines as the gunners judge the range before firing the first shot.
Oddly, while I had envisaged sweeping outdoor games, played over large areas with every man I could muster, that hasn't happened. What I've chosen each time has ended up as my usual sort of game that could as easily have been played on my table, if I had a terrain setup that allowed long, irregular slopes with hollows, swells, gullies and so on.  Another item for the "toodoo list" then.

The Dominion gun returns fire while the infantry hunkers down and waits for the enemy to emerge from previously unnoticed deadground mid-slope.
Might have been some side effect of being the 4th of July but the cards for Turn Initiative, and the dice, favoured the rebels rather markedly. None the less, there just may be grounds to criticize the Red General for not noticing two weaknesses in his position. 

The first is that the slope wasn't as even as it looked at first glance so that twice, parts of the attacking infantry dropped out of sight for  a turn due to dips and swells in the slope.

The second was that there was a sunken road within close rifle range from the riflemen and the Gatling gun on Dominion's left. To make things worse, the rebels only had to endure one round of fire in the open as they dashed from the crest of one of those dead zones, into the cover of the sunken road. Once there, a hot, close range, firefight erupted with Rebel numbers slowly gaining an edge.

The attack on the Rebel left stalled in a close range firefight with the attacking Rebels having more men but the Dominion troops having cover. As casualties mounted, General Lanigan knew he was going to have to risk all to win.
Still, despite all that has been said, the Rebels were losing men faster than the Dominion. The deadly accuracy of long range Rebel counterbattery fire helped as did the willingness of Rebel soldiers to rally to their commander's call, all helped, but the ridge couldn't be captured from dead ground.

It was time to go over the top.
On the Rebel right, their infantry has come under heavy fire from the Naval Gatling gun and a company of riflemen but has dashed from the crest down into a sunken road which will provide cover for a close range firefight.
Three months of good campaign weather ahead you say? Let's not waste it say I.

Sunday, July 5, 2020

An XI (Year 11)

Happy July 5! Its been 10 years and a day since my heart attack and so far, so good!

At last, some proper Revolutionary troops to defend the new way of counting years.

The body is a bit rusty in places and the engine's running OK as long as I don't ask too much, but the control panel is getting a bit wonky at times and I could use having the headlights replaced. Still, it should be good for another decade or two.

However, 3 weeks and a day from the big Six-Five, I still feel that I need to focus on getting the most out of the next decade and that means tightening discipline and doing more with less. If it turns out to be two or even more decades of active gaming ahead, well, nothing lost by focusing, decluttering a bit more  and getting the most out of the next ten years.

But first, there's a battle report to write up.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Assault on Nor'East Hill

A belated Happy Independence Day to my readers in the USA.
The weather was too good to not stage another outdoor game. Blueclad Rebels vs the Redcoats of the Dominion.

Red vs Blue seemed appropriate for the day. More to come.

Fort Ross? What?? How'd I miss this?

I was looking at developments in Rusland over on the Tradgardland blog and reading comments when I came across one from the ever helpful Man of Tin about the Russian built Fort Ross in California! 

 ( "HELLO!!" "Fort Ross?? Really?"......... "Well, we'll have to have one of those won't we?")

Probably just as well I didn't come across this 12 years ago when I was considering a "54-40" or fight, 40mm, 1840's British+Spanish vs US+Russian's pseudo-historical what if campaign. (The origin of Atlantica as we know it). I might have missed a lot of enjoyable explorations of metaphorical dead end streets. 
Re-creation of an actual historical Fort Ross in California.
By © Frank Schulenburg, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Ah well. Probably for the best those 40's are too cute and practical for their own good and breed like rabbits.

I've already been thinking about resurrecting the originally planned but not followed up on, 'Russian' Colony in Atlantica, but in 54mm. After all, I should have at least one unit from my first original sculpt mould, aka  "Ivan".  I think I have enough lancer bits in the spares box to add a stand of Cossacks as well. Always wanted some in a larger size.  

Ivan and his brothers will, of course, join with the "Rebel" forces.

Friday, July 3, 2020

Please Hold

Your blog post will be available shortly.

(Ha! Heard that before.)