Sunday, October 30, 2022

If You Go Down To The Woods Today....

The Adventures of Prince Micheal: Episode 25: 

Be prepared for a big surprise!

As the month of October drew towards a close, Prince Micheal found himself assigned to escort his Aunt Kathleen home after an extended visit.  They set out on a cool but sunny October morning, two of his companions,  four archers, a wagon, 8 infantrymen as a rearguard and a mounted rider scouting ahead. 

(Click on the pictures to see an enlarged version.)

All had been quiet until the scout was surprised by a troop of Centaurs emerging from the woods ahead of him, followed by the sound of battle from behind him. With the way ahead and behind him blocked, he chose to try to out run the arrows and warn the rear of the column. He nearly made it......

The sudden appearance of armed lizardmen in the woods startled Lady Katherine whose horse bolted. The brave Sir Jeffery was soon in hot pursuit leaving only Prince Micheal and one knight to hold off three times their number of lizards. They decided to exercise their discretion. 

Hardly had the fray begun when a party of centaurs appeared from the woods behind the column, acompanied by woman in purple riding a giant Siamese tiger! As the Centaurs' arrows began to clatter on their armour, the Purple witch rose up waved her hands and lightning flashed out. Unable to reply, the soldiers fell back into the woods.  

For a moment, the whole force, faced with such unusal and terrifying enemies, like characters from an old folk tale, wavered but the example of their bold Prince, the cover of the woods and the sudden appearance of a huge Woodmen who called encouragements to them as he appeared out of the depths of the woods. 

With the line steadied, the archers emerged from the woods to get a clear shot at the Lizards, supported by Prince Micheal, the Woodsmen and the remains of the escort. In the rear, the infantry lurked in the woods, sheltered from the Centaurs missiles while Brave Sir Jeffrey (who had been first to the rear as usual)  stood guard over the Princess. 

The archers peppered the Lizards with arrows but it wasn't enough. The Shamen leading the Lizardmen summoned evil images and thoughts and hurled them at the knights. The Prince stood firm but the rest were cowed and fell back, even the brave forester found himeself unable to withstand such magic. The Prince, determined to end this or die trying, pricked his charger and bellowed a challenge. As he hewed the first Lizardman, the rest suddenly broke, not even the old Shaman could hold them.  

With the flight of the Lizard warriors, it was over. There were not enough Centaurs remaining to tackle the whole of  escort supported by their new friends and as quick as they came, they were gone, fadingback into the woods.   Back by the farm, the Lady of the Glade  treated the wounded and calmed the Lady Katherine while Michael's men regrouped and started preparing to camp for the night.

Note: This game was played using the current version of 'Stout Hearts and Willing Swords' with a few hurriedly written fantasy rules. These will probably be adjusted and expanded.

Saturday, October 29, 2022

A Sunday Morning Ride

Its been a busy few days. What better way to spend a Sunday morning than a ride through the woods to Grandma's?

The cards are a mix of hidden units, and "dummies". The cards and dummies were mixed by troop type then placed in likely spots so even I don't know who is where.

I was going to start Saturday morning but realized that I didn't have unit stats and capabilities for the non-humans and special characters so I came up with a few ideas which I added to the Quick Reference Sheet. Now it remains to be seen if they'll work.










Prince Micheal





3 wounds











2 wounds









18” 5+











3 wounds








Mountain Queen





Bolt, Fear  

Lizard Wizard





Fear, 2 wounds









9”  5+


Full speed in woods.


All enemy within 6” who fail to save may not move or shoot or attack on their next turn.


All enemy within 6” who fail to save will immediately retreat a full move.

Lightning Bolt:

Roll 3d6” vs 1 group within 12” or vs 1 Hero within 6”.  

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Ever Wonder If When You Get Old......

You'll turn into a grumpy old man wanting things to be proper, with no nonsense? 

No, me neither.

(Click on the picture for a closer look at some of the characters in the background....trallalal)

Exeunt singing "If you go down to the woods today..."

Monday, October 24, 2022

Pass In Review: #4 Day of Battle 3d Prlnted 40mm "Wild Men".

This one is an interesting figure. I can't help but think he started life as a fantasy figure but he is listed in the Medieval Scottish list and I could certainly see him coming out to fight for Wallace. 

 MEDIEVAL – Woodsmen 28/40mm
Day of Battle Medieval Scottish Range On Line Catalogue (click)
(This is the 40mm version.)

Uhhh, he's comin' this way, I think I'll be going now....

Overall, I like this figure, he has lots of energy and the movement looks real to me, like he was about to really lay one on. I'm not sure about the details of clothing but they'll pass in my polyglot collection. The sculpting was largely just right for my tastes and made the figure very easy to paint quickly.  

He looks a bit blurry going past, must be moving fast.....

Sizewise, he is a little on the tall, hefty, size. The active pose makes it hard to judge his height but similar to other Day of BAttle 3d figures and Sash & Sabre but with the bulk of Trigard with a head size like some Meisterzinn homecast figures. That leads to my only criticism, if you look at the next picture, his bare head is noticeably larger that the spearman's helmeted head. Now I've met people who have towered a foot above me and people whose hats would slide right over my eyes but I've never seen one whose head is anywhere near that big! Still, once painted up and on the table, I suspect it wouldn't be noticed once the game begins.

A Wildman behind a Scots spearman. Compare the size of the wildman's
 head to the spearman's helmet. 

As it happens, his clothing is not going to fit well with my 16thC Scots anyway, so I have earmarked hin as a special character for my Prince Valiant Elastolin collection. There, the figures are so much smaller and thinner that he will look like a near giant, a Hagrad sort of character if you like.  Just the sort of character to add something new to next Prince Micheal story/game. 

One last look.

****+1/2* (4.5) is my rating due to the exessively large head. 

There are supposed to be a few welcome rainy days coming, so there may well be a battle to report on before the next sample figure gets painted.

Sunday, October 23, 2022


A hasty job, and either I miscounted or somehow misplaced one but I substituted where necessary. Some of the figures are commercial casualties right out of the box but there are a handful of lame veterans with broken ankles and a few classic crawling Airfix figures who just didn't fit well into the ranks.  

The picture also shows some of my old markers, mostly buglers and drummer, on hand to use for various purposes over the years. I might use them to mark units that need to rally after losing a melee (assuming I add a " disorder" or "must rally after losing melee" or similar rule) or something else. 

The dice are just sitting on the stand so they can be easily adjusted. It means they are more easily knocked askew if one isn't careful, but so far it hasn't been a problem. 

I still haven't found the cowardly 7th cavalry deserter yet,
so slightly modified one of the Atlantic troopers to take his place.
(As usual click on the photo to enlarge.)

The title of course, refers to the parade ground order: "Markers!" which was the order for those soldiers designated as 'right markers' to march on to the parade square to the location designated by the RSM before the rest of the battalion etc was ordered to fall in and align themselves on the markers. 

Saturday, October 22, 2022

Refit, Reorganize.

 Since I was happy with the 6 stand Brigade units. I've gone ahead and started refitting in preparation for a 2nd test game.

First up was a quick repainting of the backs of my stands. Red for 1st Division, Blue for 2nd etc and marked each stand in a Brigade so I can easily ID the Division and Brigade of every stand. This should make deployment and cleanup easier as well as helping to maintain brigade integrity while playing.

Nothing tidy about a casualty station. The empty horse on the right did have an Airfix wounded cavalry trooper on its saddle when I went downstairs for supper. A search will be organized in daylight. Oddly enough, while I have 6 or 7 Airfix cavalry officers and various troopers, I only have the one 'I been shot ma' figure, the now missing one.......

Since I've gone back to tracking hits by brigade by using small dice bought for that purpose earlier this year, I also resumed a paused project to paint a casualty marker for each unit. This will consist of a wounded figure, or similar, on a round base with room for one of the little dice. Based on past experience, this should make it easier to keep the marker associated with the correct unit. This old project was made easier by the large donation of figures last year which contained a number of wounded etc. A helpful addition.  


Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Nil Desperandum

Well, its finally over. 


When I decided to get the ACW lads on the table, I was thinking that I had the rules all squared away. Didn't take long to remember what a mess I'd gotten myself into when I decided that while I had enjoyed the 'Regiment as unit' games, they took too long to play. I had experimented with various different approaches,  but a quick scroll through the past ACW posts informed me that I had put the lads away without a new faster playing set of rules.  

So. over the last 2 weeks, I've been using any free time with energy to work on the design and then play a test turn or two then get back to the design when I had time and energy. Getting something, fast playing, at least as "right" feeling as many movies are, and which didn't outright give the lie to most of the memoirs I've read, wasn't easy. I'm not sure I'll ever manage all of that but I'll settle for a set of rules that will allow me to fill the table and play to a conclusion in 3-4 hours for a simple scenario.

A minor victory for the Federals.

Well, today, I played the last turn. The current version of the The Plastic Army of the Potomac rules are more a devopment of my old Hearts of Tin rules han anything else. I need to pick a suitable old favourite scenario, reset the table,  and play through without an interruption. Not sure exactly when that will be, but soon. 

Saturday, October 15, 2022

Meanwhile Back At The Table

.....The battle rages.

About mid-day

Full report to follow. 

Friday, October 14, 2022

Finnigan Begin Again

Today I had a few hours and was able to get back to my game. It didn't take long to remember that when I last had the ACW lads out, I had been trying to work out a faster playing, but still engaging, game. It only took a few turns to realize that I had once again designed a fast playing, boring, game. Pfhhhttt!  

Somewhere near the 1/2 way mark of the first battle, begun last week.

So it was back to the drawing board. I'll spare you the details of the internal discussions but the sporadic experiments this year have taken me from 3 stand Regiments grouped into 3 regiment Brigades grouped into 2 or 3 Brigade Divisions,  to  9 stand Brigades grouped into 1 division, to  6 stand Brigades with 2 or 3 forming a Division. 

On Saturday I'll see how it goes.

"When Johnny comes marching...." 

Drummer!  Sound the long roll!

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Please Standby

Normal service should be restored soon....

 In other news, the attack on the wood shed by the Wild Cherry tree has been repulsed with the attacker being cut to pieces.

Sunday, October 9, 2022

There's A Gonna Be A Battle Fer Sure!

 Things are beginning to slow down so.......... time for a battle(game)

To be continued

Friday, October 7, 2022

Pass In Review #3: Day of Battle 3d Printed Indian Warrior

 At last, a day off!  Seemed like a good morning to paint up another sample 40mm 3d printed resin figure from Chris Parker's Day of Battle web store

The figure came with seperate arms and a choice of 2 heads. Again its a close match in size and  bulk with Sash & Sabre 40's and thus compatible with a number of 40mm companies' figures. 

The arms had a sort of ball joint so it was possible to insert them into the socket in the shoulder and rotate them into various positions. A rather innovative design I thought. 

The figure comes without a base, as usual, so I glued him onto my standard single figure washer base.

Its been about a decade, (maybe more) since I painted any F&IW Indian warriors so I did a little bit of digging in my books and on the net and proceeded from there. My S&S F&IW Indian warriors moved on a number of years ago, but he fits well enough with my Prince August Skraelings to join them when and if required on the table.

It was "one of those" days, all thumbs and "oops" etc  and I just couldn't seem to be able to mix my usual Indian skin colour today but it'll have to do. I could have added more colour to the figure, perhaps a red loin cloth rather than leather, more warpaint, etc but I figured subdued is appropiate for sculking in cover.

Given the quality, I'd recommend them based on that, but when you consider the price as well I would definitely buy more, (and some canoes!) if I were to return to Last of the Mohicans inspired wargaming.
Note:   It seems I relied on memories of how expensive 40mm miniatures seemed 15 years ago when I was buying tem, I failed to check current prices and the difference bewteen metal and 3d printed seems to be minimal.

***** 5 Stars on this range.

Coming soon(ish): some sample medieval Scots being  quietly mugged and forced to serve in the 16thC (because I'm not replacing my antique 25mm Scots), and a big, burley, wild looking, guy with a huge axe. (!?)

Coming before that: A wargame!  What sort? Well, we'll see!

Monday, October 3, 2022

This Week A Decade Ago

Yeah, October isn't going as smooth as hoped so there has been neither painting nor playing.    A decade ago there was playing though! So, without further ado:

From the Archives:

Battle of Yawner's Farm

Battle Report from 10 Oct 2012: The search for the right game in full swing: 

Live action of some sort will resume soon. (I hope!!!