Sunday, September 29, 2019! CUT!

I managed to steal an hour to play this morning.

Things were moving along in the old way when I realized that something didn't "feel" right. So I paused to think about it. Then I tried a few ideas out for "feel" before getting back to work.

The problem seems fairly simple, the old stuff works fine  but with the ratio of  troops to me's the armies are more than I can handle without tedium, especially on days when I'm tired.

There are several good routes I can go to resolve the issue (playing smaller games not being one of them)  but I need to make some choices about things like what's important to me and are the sort of battles I want to fight the same as they were a couple of years ago, and so on.

The game will be reset and  resume shortly.

Friday, September 27, 2019

We Don't Need No Minicampaign

We can end this with just one battle.

Fall is always one of the hardest seasons for finding time to paint or play but some goes on anyway.

With only a few voting  days left it doesn't look like ACW is going to be the poll winner so I thought I'd give the boys an outing now.

The table is set, maybe I'll be able to make time on Sunday...

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

A Battle at Last!

The Battle of Argentium Bridge has been fought!
One of the illustrations from the History of the Wars of the Four Winds.
(Click here to be taken to an account of the battle.)

What's next? Time will tell, Lets hope that tomorrow is rainy!
Don't forget to have your say in the poll for the 10th Anniversary Mini-Campaign by sending me an email or leaving a comment.
(See blog header for details)

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Meanwhile, On The Table

Coming soon

To my Gathering of Hosts Blog.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Almost there

Now that my painting stuff has once again been transferred up to my gaming room, these guys have been finished and a first coat of varnish applied.  Just need to do the basing thing.

I'm not sure if it was my shaky hands or my fuzzy eyes that were the most trouble but as toy soldiers I'm happy with them.

Saturday's plan to join in on another 15mm Napoleonic game has been scuppered when Jeff lost the venue. Its only postponed but I'm starting to think about a Saturday Solo Game instead.

Speaking of which don't forget to vote! NQSYW has a lead at the moment.
(See header for details and sidebar for current standing).

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Recalled to the Table

A little bit of progress at last. Revolutionary French skirmishers.
Yeah I know, the grenadier pompom should be a horsehair plume or a carrot but .......might add the falling plumes yet if I get inspired.

Early stages of painting.

This will be unit 3 out of 6 for my French. Then maybe Highlanders will deserve reinforcements.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Battle by Lamp Light

OK, life is slowly returning to normal, my wife is off to a dog show and I have a long list of overdue things that need doing. Didn't take too long to decide that the most important thing was to post about my Battle by Lamp Light.

The Barbarians have rushed the hill, their battle line losing all order, while the Duke sends his cavalry to try and flank the barbarian raiders while leading his infantry levies to reinforce the hill.
The game was Reinforcements on Table from CS Grant's Scenarios for Wargames. Rather annoyingly I've lost the set up pictures  but here was the previously posted one.
The local garrison takes post on long ridge, hoping that the Duke will be in time.
The game calls for a small holding force with reinforcements close at hand to hold a key ridge against a larger attacking force. I cut the number of units down to suit what I had available but tried to keep the balance.

I'll let the captions and pictures tell the tale as well as they can but it was a fast paced game with the advantage swaying back and forth and the decision up in the air until the last turn.

The thin line atop the ridge has held the first assault but is in danger of being flanked. Help is at hand though and the Duke's cavalry has cleared the gap to the left while his archers have cleared off the Saxon archers. 
The game left me with two firm decisions: I want get back to painting (and repainting where appropriate) and organizing this collection, and I need to decided if I do or don't really want to play a skirmish game based on individuals even when grouped into units rather than a low level conventional wargame with units. Once the latter, crucial choice is made, I can, maybe, nail down the details of the rules!

The Barbarians have taken two thirds of the ridge but have suffered terrible losses and both of their flanks are now in some danger.
Now, on the surface, this is an ideal setting for a skirmish game and when I only had 1/3 of the current numbers that seemed the only sensible option. There are however, three strikes against it. The first and most crucial is that I'm not really a big fan of 1:1 skirmish games, the second is that my primary source of inspiration, Hal Foster's Prince Valiant  strips, doesn't treat battles that way apart from rare duels between characters. The last is that I have more figures than I can handle at that level.

My compromise has usually been to group them into units but use man to man melee, much as Charge! does for cavalry and light infantry, and that is what I came back to for this game. It worked seemed to slow the game, replacing thinking about battle plans and quick, tense combats with loads of tedious die rolling.

OK so not a hard decision after all. I need to back up a bit and have 'Characters' and 'Units'. Melee can be a fairly traditional unit vs unit affair with "a die for X number of figures" and a resolution mechanism. I can then have a special mechanism for personal duels where it is warranted.
With the Eorl Helgin down with serious wounds and under attack from three sides the raiders break and flee.
OK, back to catching up with all those days of no house and yard work and with the post hurricane clean up.

If you missed the last post. Please read the header and submit your vote for the coming Celebration Mini-campaign! The current results can be read on the sidebar.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

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 and I'm asking YOU to help choose the period. It has to be something from my current list but please comment on any post from Sep 12 till Oct 1 or email me : to let me know your preference and any suggestions on the mini campaign.

The polls are now open!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Coffee and Wifi outing with Preview (Updated)

Should really have played with Zinnfiguren by oil lamplight but the battery powered LED reading lamp  worked well.

It was a good game, report to follow if/when power is restored if I can still remember what happened.

If the outage stretches into Day 5 I'll get the 54's out.

PS I see The page view clicker ticked over the million mark while I was away! Woohoo! Thank you to all readers! More later if I can think of something worth writing. Contest maybe? Give away? We'll see.
Update. Yay! Got home to power. Chores first, new post later.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Wargaming in the Dark Age

2 days now without power or internet. One or two more to go but its all good. (Popped out today for lunch and wifi).

A couple of downed trees to cleanup but no damage to house etc so all good. I decided to play a game 19thC style with no light but sunlight and maybe a lantern (battery operated LED not kerosene, I'm not a reenactor!) Since its a bit dark I thought a Dark Age game would be appropriate.

Should be back online within 2 days.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Day 2:

Well, a quick Teaser anyway:

Some of Paul's 25mm Minifig ECW

The rest of the report will come when  Hurricane Dorian has been and gone and the power's back on. OK, the power outage is still just an expectation based on previous hurricane and tropical storm experiences but we're ready!

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Day One

This is the first shot of yesterday's A Gentleman's War game.

Unfortunately it was also the last because I was too busy GMing the 4 players to remember. Oops.

Old 25mm Minifig ECW later today.

Monday, September 2, 2019

Darts and handguns: Something for later.

The internet can be a wonderful thing. While looking for some info on a music video, I found myself here:

From wipidea:

"The first clear references to the Irish píob mhór relate to Henry VIII's siege of Boulogne. A muster roll of the "Kerne to be transported into Englaunde to serve the kinge" contains entries of various pipers attached to these forces, such as "The Baron of Delvene’s Kerne: Brene McGuntyre pyper".[2] and according to an entry in Holinshed’s Chronicles(1577) for May 1544, "In the same moneth also passed through the citie of London in warlike manner, to the number of seven hundred Irishmen, having for their weapons darts and handguns with bagpipes before them: and in St. James Park besides Westminster they mustered before the king."

I'm going to have to add some of these to my 16thC English army. I had wanted to do some Irish but didn't really want to get into campaigning in Ireland before I finished my French and Scottish campaigns.  Something to do this winter perhaps.