Viewer's Choice Celebration MiniCampaign

It has now been over 20 years since I launched "With MacDuff On the Web" and nearly 10 years since I launched my 2 blogs: Gathering of Hosts and Battle game of the Month.

To celebrate the years and the friends and the million hits I've decided to run a 3 game mini-campaign in late October. By popular vot e it will be set in the mid 18th Century.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Some things change, some don't.

Today I searched back through the archives for posts on the Square Brigadier, especially those with a Colonial angle. One of the first I read was from March 28 2013 in which I wrote that the snow was largely gone and the garlic and crocus shoots were peeking up through the soil. Well, on the 28th this year there was 3 feet of snow over the garlic and a whopping 6 foot deep snowbank over the crocus and tulips.

On the other hand in that post I had just painted a 2nd Hussar for the Overhilse Hussars of the Republic and mentioned that I had 2 more ready to paint so as to bring the squadron up to strength. By an odd coincidence I just finished them yesterday, 2 years later!  
Oberhilse cavalry prepare to sortie from the lines.

Anyway I got my answers since, as suspected, I had been down this road before. The answer is essentially that the Square Brigadier is about the General and the handling of the army,  not about unit tactics and formations. So, putting that Old School aspect aside, I once again stripped down the rules to their original pattern. This  assumes that unit officers are doing their job and lets  the dice show how well they have done it while the general focuses on the plan and the handling of reserves.

I was also reminded that making the squares larger was  mostly about making more room for 40mm friendly terrain not about changing the game.

The forlorn has been repulsed. Brigadier Marten leads his reserves forward to try again, and again. Nice to back in the era of black powder so I can mark units that have fired again! That's the 4.7" in the far corner firing its first shot. Technically its too early for the 4.7" but its similar enough to earlier heavy naval guns used in other colonial campaigns of the day that its staying. 

Yesterday I reset last week's scenario to fit Atlantica in the 1880's and played around rather unsuccessfully with various more detailed variants of the Square Brigadier including, formations, morale checks, bayonet charges and so on.

Today I played through an exciting solo game using a stripped down, retro, version. I'll be polishing the draft this week and playing again soon.

The f1rst ever charge by tbe Hussars of the Republic was repulsed by firepower but they had charged the gatling bravely and covered the advance of the infantry. In the end Blue's accurate shooting decided the day and after heavy casualties with 3 infantry units and the gatling destroyed, and General Marten wounded,  the Queen's red coats were forced to give up and retreat covered by the Navy's guns.


  1. Will you kill me if I pointout that it was plus 12 in Regina today, our snow is almost all hind and we gave tulips poking their heads up?
    Of course two ears ago, we had do much snow that it. Wan't all gone until the end of April. Glad to see the cavalry finished.
    Cheers, pD

  2. Naval gun looks good in action. Glad the game went well for you.BTW what size are the squares?

    1. The squares are now 6" which will allow me to use more figures

    2. The squares are now 6" which will allow me to use more figures

  3. Ross Mac,

    Funnily enough I spent part of my weekend looking over old blog entries and rules ... and found the experience quite enlightening.

    I do like the look of your current wargames table, and the larger squares do seem to work better than the smaller ones.

    All the best,


    1. I think they will look better with the 40mm figures as long as I don't let the look change the game.

    2. I think they will look better with the 40mm figures as long as I don't let the look change the game.