Monday, 25 April 2016

A first try at Impetus Baroque

       William of Orange army lines up ready to defeat the waiting King James II army
After a recent game my dad had umpired up at Colin's house using the new Impetus Baroque rules he was keen to let me have a go at using them so he had decided that we would use his William of Orange and King James II armies to show case how the system worked. I took the roll of King James and was tasked with defending the position on the out skirts of a town behind a stream. I have played this period once before using pike and Shotte but going back through my blog to find the AAR of the game I found that unbelievably it was almost exactly 2years to the day when I last had a game with them! So as was the case then the period is very unfamiliar to me so I won't go into the ins and outs of the units used (mainly as I'm not greatly sure what was what looking back at the photos I'm afraid). 

The British guard brigade supported by heavy cannons stare down the Kings army
A Irish brigade dug in behind the walls of the farm
Jacobite cavalry clash with their Dutch guard counter parts
The advance defensive line of the French detachment comes in for some heavy fire from the muskets of Williams men
I have used Impetus rules before so I had a slight understanding of how the mechanics worked although I never really warmed to them when we used them in the war of the roses games. However I must say I really enjoyed the Impetus Baroque system which imho I felt played much better. Once we had played a few turns and I had made abit of a hash of my cavalry movement, I started to get my head around the command system and when to interrupt your oppents move, well at least attempt to, I found that the game moved swiftly with plenty of decision making to be done. In the end our (trial) game finished as a draw, my cavalry on the right flank had completely routed two of my dads cavalry brigades after a number of rounds charging/counter charging and won that particular flank, however in the centre my French brigade which was the initial line of defense had been decimated and my second line was under a heavy attack from my dads English guard brigade. On the left flank I had lost my Dragoons but the Irish brigade holding the farm area was winning against the attacking Dutch forces. It was a fun game and yeah I think I enjoyed the Impetus Baroque rules just as much as I do using pike and Shotte which is a good thing as my dad is aiming to use Impetus Baroque for this period permanently. Hopefully it won't be another 2years to the next time I play with these (beautiful) armies..

The Dragoons struggle to hold off the attack from Williams cavalry
The guard musketry fire proves to much for the French pike regiment
The French line begins to waver under increasing heavy fire
The Jacobite cavalry start to win the fight against the Dutch guard cavalry
The elite guard brigade Ready to cross the stream and assault the waiting Irish troops
The Dutch line starts to break as it can't find away through the Irish defences
Irish pike take the fight to the unexpecting guard muskets

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Rescue mission

            My latest addition to my ever growing star fleet, the Lambda-Class Shuttle 
The Mrs and I managed to grab a game of X wing last Sunday night so I finally managed to get to use the Lambda class shuttle which I had purchased a few weeks before. I had decided to use the scenario which comes with the Lambda box set which basically involved the empire player having to rescue 5 passanges from the 3 disabled ships randomly placed on the gaming area. The rebel player had to capture 6 passengers or destroy all the empire ships to win the game. I played the empire and Catherine was the rebels.
The game at set up
My force consisted of Lambda class shuttle Piloted by Cononel Jendon with intelligence upgrade, Tie interceptor piloted by Turr Phennir and two tie fighters, night beast and Academy pilots 
Giving Catherine the choice of rebel ships she choose 2 X wings piloted by Biggs Darklighter with proton torpedos and R2-D2 and Wedge Antilles with proton torpedos, Marksmenship and R5-K6 and finally a B-Wing with heavy Auto blasters 
The early running s in the game saw Catherine quickly capture 4 passengers through some good shooting onto the disabled ships, I had tasked the tie interceptor with the task of engaging the X wings while my lambda shuttle was to head to the closest disabled ship and rescue all 4 of the passengers on board. However while heading towards this objective Biggs X wing torpedoed and knocked out the shields from the lambda which was making slow progress thanks to some rather dodgy moving ( I spent two moves flying into and overlapping the tie interceptor). I have never used a ship with a large base before and it definitely took some time to get used to how the ship handles.
One of the t fighters was involved in a dog fight with the b wing and gradually I was managing to whittle down the shields of the ship with some close range fire.
Both X wings fly to safety after another attack onto the Lambda shuttle but this time the empires ship escapes any major damage.
My second tie fighter had slyly managed to rescue a passenger from a disabled ship, however I made a mistake as I thought I had to escape at the far edge of my deployment zone when I could have escaped to the left hand table side aswell, this was to prove costly as I made a mad rush towards the far table edge.
The b wing fighter managed to intercept the tie fighter as Catherine executed a very good move and managed to get into the position to use the heavy auto blasters which made short work of the tie fighters last hull point blowing it up. This ment the rebels now had 5 passengers to the empires nil, one more would see them claim victory.
However I managed to fight back and the tie interceptor finally managed to out manovere biggs X wing and destroy the X wing before R2-D2 managed to repair a shield point as he had done of a number of occasions into the game already, keeping Biggs in the fight up until this point. However the rules of the mission state that once a rebel ship is destroyed a model of the same ship is returned to the game using the stats for the poorest pilot available and can re-enter play in the following turn.
The Lambda shuttle had 4 passengers boarded and was one move from exiting the table as the b wing closed in for the kill. However this time my tie fighter got the first shot off and scored a critical hit which led to the b wing suffering double damage and exploding before it could get its laser shot at the lambda shuttle. The following turn the Lambda exited the table mean if both me and Catherine needed one more passenger each to win the game. I lost my final tie fighter night beast to Wedge's X wing and my remaining ships were down to only one hit each left. With the reinforcement rebel forces Catherine had almost a unscathered fighter force. I made a final dash with the Lamda shuttle to reach a disabled ship as The rebels went all guns blazing to capture the final passenger. Somehow, amazingly I managed to save all the attacks on the disabled ships which allowed me to close into the disabled ship with my lambda shuttle while my tie interceptor tried to off set the X wing piloted by Wedge.
However it all proved to be in vain as the rebel X wing which had arrived as a reinforcement managed to find its target with a critical hit ending the involvement of the Lambda class shuttle. With this the Rebels had gained victory as my remaining tie interceptor only had one hull point remaining so couldn't pick up any passengers (when rescuing a passenger the empire player suffers a point of damage for each passenger rescued times by the speed of the move which proceeded this, meaning I would suffer at least one point of damage). It ended up been a very close run game, at one stage I thought the game was going to be over very quickly as The Rebels were 5-0 up but once I managed to get the Lambda shuttle off table with the passengers on board it led to a mad rush from both sides to claim the final passenger for victory. Great fun again, the X wing wing game is really a fun way to spend a couple of hours gamimg!

The Lambda shuttle and colonol Jendon go down under the laser fire of the X wing as the Rebels win the day

Saturday, 9 April 2016

A dark day in the desert for the British relief coloum

Our last game we played saw me take a 'right old hammering' at the hands of the Mahdist army commanded by my dad. The object of the game was to reach the town and railway line at the other end of the table and hold it until the end of the allotted time for the game was reached. I had the British/Egyptian force in three separate columns with the idea of marching as quickly as possible to the town shielded by the cavalry brigade who would be scouting ahead of the columns. All Mahdists units were off table with secretly marked entry points. i miss interpreted (or hadn't listened!) what my dad had said about this deployment and i expected troops to be hidden behind the sand dunes ready to attack as soon as they became visible and not all off table. This proved to be the undoing of the Egyptian brigade who were swiftly flanked and broken as i had them in lines as they advanced over the first of the sand dunes ready to engage and suddenly appearing enemy, in hind sight i would have had the columns much closer together (well that's one of my excuses for this rather emphatic failure of a relief column) where i could have had a opportunity to turn and face the arriving mahdists on my flank.
The British cavalry brigade advances ahead of the main British column
 some rather suspect command rolling sees the British coumn quickly lose cohesion as they struggle to move through the heat of the desert
Baggra Cavalry enter the the battlefield on the Egyptians flank and quickly overrun the Egyptian cavalry scouts and infantry battalion with only minor losses
the rest of the Egyptian brigade is attacked by a flanking horde of angry mahidst war bands.Although they managed to turn face and at least get a couple of shots off they were quickly engaged in close combat
the British hussars reach the town and move to secure the left flank ready to meet any forward elements of the mahdist force
The British brigade forms up into lines facing the large sand dunes where mahdist flags have been spotted and drums can be heard. however the artillery was struggling to get into position with time running out
The Egyptians are broken as the Sudanese battalion gives up and runs at the war cries of the approaching war band and the artillery is abandoned. (the Sudanese unit suffered from newly painted debut syndrome as they preformed most shockingly!)
Fresh from destroying the Egyptians the frenzied mahdists turn there attention towards the thin line of British
As expected the British cavalry as they reach the summit of the hill/dune are faced by four dervish war bands led by a aggressive leader.
The Baggra cavalry break from the main body of the mahdist force and swing round the palm tree area to threaten the flank of the British line. the palm tree area had been occupied by the British mounted infantry but not fancying their chances these troops quickly mounted there horses and quit the battlefield in the face of the mahdists war screams when charged by them
At this point of the battle is where it now went all wrong for my British. My cavalry under preformed in melee with the dervish troops and were dangerously close to becoming a broken brigade which would end the game. Also i was attempting to move the KRR battalion into a position so the British battalions would be in a brigade square, however they failed this order so i was forced to move the highland battalion from the centre of the front line to cover their flank from the dangerously close baggra cavalry brigade.The General followed this up with another failed order for for the remaining two British infantry battalions to close the gap created by the highlanders, leaving a gaping whole into the middle of my deployment. My dad quickly capitalised on this and had no such command difficulties passing a series of orders and 'follow me' moves to really punish my mishap. This was aided with most of the Mahdist generals been of an aggressive nature gaining a +1 to charge orders (before the game we rolled to see what traits each brigade leader and CnC would have, allowing the mahdist to roll two dice and choosing there preferred roll) where i ended up with a timid Brigade leader of the British. These random traits i would like to use in our future Black powder games for this period as i felt it fitted quite nicely into the style of the game. It wasn't long once my flanks had been attacked that my brigade became broken leading to another Mahdist victory. Well the lessons have been learnt from this game and i will approach the use of the British and most definitely the rather poor excuse of a soldier that the Egyptians are in future games. At no stage did i bring to force my over realming fire power onto the the mahdist troops who ended up having a field day cutting my units to pieces although my dad did use the Mahdist army extremely well it has to be said. Still it was a good game and it was nice to see the new Desert battle mat my dad has purchased in action for the first time, it really did look the business! Unfortunately i have alot of work on the next couple of weekends so i will have to wait a little bit longer to get this game out of my system than normal.
The highlanders are forced to break line to cover the flank of KRR battalion as the commander lose his cool issuing orders
The lancers charge and although they hit home hard they are unable to rout the stuborn Dervish infantry
As a unit of Hussars retires shaken from the dervish charge the high landers turn to face the pursuing foe and unleash a point blank volley which only just disorders the warband
The British gun is over run as the mahdist troops charge home into the flanks of two British infantry units. The highlanders give up the volley fire and fix bayonets and charge the disordered warband
Disobeying orders the dervish troops retire behind the large sand dune to lick their wounds away from the remains of the British cavalry
After the KKR battalion retired disordered and shaken, the mahdist infantry turned their attention to the highlanders.N ow attacked on two fronts they proceeded to chuck away their rifles and fled leaving the Britsh army broken
The victorious Mahdist position at the end of the battle

Monday, 4 April 2016

A couple of newbies..

While I was at my dads gaming at the weekend getting a royal drubbing (AAR to follow) I managed to take a couple of pictures of a couple of my latest additions . 
First up is my camp area for my 15mm Macedonian army . The tent and models are magister Militum models apart from the command stand which are from the excellent Xyston ancient range.

And secondly is my 10mm French 12pounder battery for use in Blucher. The models are from magister Militum once again