Saka Light Cavalry

Saka Light Cavalry

Thursday, 31 December 2015

Santa Clause 2016 Outgoing

Obviously I will not be doing a Secret Santa Outgoing post LOL but this one I can. Last year my target got a really good present so I knew I had to put in some effort but that's cool.

I did the usual reading of my targets blog until I found something I thought I could do. Gary is working on a Napoleonic French army using AB Miniatures so a look on their site brought up a set of six ADC figures and I thought that would make a good choice.

I now know that AB produce some rather fine highly detailed figures and the ADC's certanly are no exception. 

They were not too difficult to clean up though the mould lines were rather prominent. Still prep time was not too long and I primed them in black.

I used a file of ADC images to paint these up so they are reasonably accurate. I have also left the bases plain brown so Gary can base them up as he see's fit. I don't know if he will use them with command figures or as just table furniture.

I was trying to paint these up to match Gary's style though in the end they were mostly how I would do them so was rather unsuccessful in that.

They were a challenge to paint as my Napoleonic painting has all been 6mm except a few 10mm and 20mm figures a few years ago. 

You will have to forgive the photo's as I only had the one shot at them as I needed to get them into the post and the winters sun was making it interesting.

I'm just glad I don't have a whole army to paint as they rival many a 28 for detail and it seems a chime not to paint it in. 

This ones one of my favourite  and was one of the first I painted. I painted them one at a time and mostly did not repeat colours to try and keep them looking that bit different from each other.

Typically they were a lot of fun to paint, though towards the end I was starting to clock watch as the days ticked by as I wanted then to arrive before the real Christmas rush set in.

Fortunately I managed to get them done in time and had just enough spare time to really enjoy the finish.

So another fun Santa Clause for me and I am already looking forward to next years event were not even out of 2015 yet.

Talking of which, I hope you all have a great New Year which brings you just the right amount of painting and gaming.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

A Little Reading Top Up

Christmas has been good to me on the reading front too. I have to admit to having picked Incomparable, To War With Wellington and Kursk for Cath but she picked the Iain Gale novels as I am close to finishing the Sharpe books and am almost up to bate with the Uthred books.

The surprise of them all was Death Before Glory, my nephew bought this for ma, it's about the Napoleonic period but covers the British in the West Indies and as such something I know very little about. It looks to be fascinating and will be next up after Incomparable. So well done James  for a star find and it looks to be a very pleasant few months of new books to work through.

Monday, 28 December 2015

Incoming Secret Santa 2015

My Secret Santa present has something in common with my Santa Clause. This being the present can and will be used with my kids. Both my son and daughter both rather like our cowboy games and these wonderful gifts will add that bit more to our games.

I received a rather splendid privy by 4Ground but to really add an extra level of fun I also received a man to sit on said toilet! No doubt my daughter will make all the right disgusted noises when someone (most likely The Boy) discovers the busy cowboy.

I also have a general purpose wagon that will sit along side the one I have already from Warbases. This is very welcome as having multiple wagons will really set the scene so much better. It will hopefully also get me to make up the other buildings I have in hand as well.

The wagon can be left unloaded allowing the odd target to climb into the wagon or I can use these crates and barrels etc to fill them. 

Last up was a Belt Fed miniatures lady, something I hope to paint up for the challenge as my lady entry perhaps? It's a nice casting so I will be looking forward to getting some paint on her.

So as you can tell I did rather better than all right, indeed I have to say I am very happy. Items I would not have got myself any time soon but all of which I am so much better for having which is exactly what I like about Secret Santa. And just like last year I plan to get all these presents assembled and painted sooner rather than later and then it's out with the figures and another fun packed game. The only question is will it be this or Saga first?

Sunday, 27 December 2015

Santa Clause 2016 Incoming

I have to say that I am really pleased with my gifts both for Secret Santa and Santa Clause, both excelled this year. Tonight I will post about my Santa Clause painted gift and hopefully tomorrow regarding my Secret Santa. Sorry for the delay but I was back at work Boxing Day till 6pm so was too tired to post yesterday.

Rusty has a four part series (more to be added) regarding the construction and painting of these figures which is great for me as it shows the conversion work he has done. You can find his blog Blackriver Wargames Society here. Not sure how to follow as the blog does not seem to have the typical follow button or follow by email.

As you can see the detail painting is fabulous and even has colour in the eyes! Certainly an upgrade on my painting standard and my Saga army will be lead by these great figures in the future.

The detail is just wonderful, I really like the crisp pattern to the tunic whilst the pointy guy happens to be a little more subtle in decoration but no less impressive.

I also love the detail of the severed head, it's not over the top with the gore and the pale flesh just looks perfect. I can't exaggerate how happy I was to open such a great looking base on Christmas day. So a big thank you to you Rusty.

Friday, 25 December 2015

Happy Christmas To You All.

My old Christmas Dwarf
By the time you read this I am assuming I will have watched the kids open their presents and in turn have opened mine including the much awaited Santa Clause and Secret Santa items. I really love the whole concept and I can't wait to see the reactions of not just my targets but of others who also have taken part this year.

Of course I may well have other hobby related items though most of the rest I will have had more of an hand in so probably no real surprises. Not that I will be on my computer much (if at all) on the big day as I am back to work on Boxing Day so will be spending much of the day playing with the kids. Indeed more or less a rerun of Christmas Eve but with new toys :-)

So whatever you are doing (or did) I hope it's a most pleasant day for you and yours.

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Persian Command Stand

With me playing a little more Hail Caesar recently and the increase in the number of units I decided I really needed another command stand. The other three have served me well for more years than I care to think about.

As such I thought it would be a great first entry in this years Analogue Painting Challenge. Rather than sticking with the other heavily cloaked versions I have gone for a more heavily armoured type given that I have a number of such cavalry units within my collection.

Most feedback from the post for the challenge has been about how bright they are. I guess playing with Loki and Kev is starting to rub off on me. It was not a concious effort nor was I overly perceptive to the end result. Still I like the look of them so may well try the same style before the challenge ends.

The figures are the good old Chariot Miniatures as supplied by Magister Militum, I have another three possible command stands to paint up at some point, two Seleucid and one Macedonian. Only the latter is not Chariot and I also have rather a lot of Greek Hoplites and Persian Heavy Cavalry so you will be seeing more of this supplier over the coming months.

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Clearing up the Table

I wanted to get my painting table cleared of half painted mini's before the challenge started, not that I tend to have many half painted figures as I normally just paint to completion but I did have a few.

This is another figure for use in roleplaying with the kids but this ones for Cath. Her only instruction at the start was that the inside of the cloak had to be a bright red, well put a tick in that box!

Later Cath mentioned that she now wanted the main colour to be a form of blue which I kind of went for but with grey being the main influence. In the end she rather likes it which is good enough for me. I really liked how the colours came together in the end.

The figure is a Reaper model cast in metal and was a joy to work on. I painted the sword up black as I wanted it to seem like it's magically enhanced so as not to show in the dark. 

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Three Months To Go............

OK so lately you have seen far less newly painted figures and more AAR's and Quiz material. Well that is set to change as the 6th Annual Analogue Painting Challenge has now kicked off, a whole seven and a half hours ago in fact. Of course I have my first submission near finish as I wait for the basing paint to dry then it's about 10 minutes of work till it's finished. Probably late tonight as I am off out on the firms do in a couple of hours time.

Last night was spent finishing off a few miniatures that had already been started. Two for my wife for roleplaying and two others for roleplaying but NPC's. I have also based up a unit of 6mm Italian Dragoons and four light bolt throwers also 6mm. All these will be finished with the just painted first entry. 

After that it's going to be a real mix of scales and periods as I dash from one project to another as the mode takes me. I still have over 100 figures to prime but after that I don't think I will have a massive amount of prep to do over the next three months.

So to all challengers, have a great painting marathon and I look forward to see what we produce this year. With 88 taking part this year it's bound to be eye candy packed.

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Secret Santa is Go?

Hopefully most if not all of us have now sent and received their Secret Santa items, can anyone yet to send let Cath know and when you expect to get it out. Same goes for anyone who has yet to receive, can you let Cath know and she can check if it's already been sent.

Me, well my outward gift was sent some time ago via the vendor and they were great about the whole Secret Santa thing. I also have received both my Secret Santa and Santa Clause presents and they are sitting under the tree looking mighty interesting I can tell you.

As for my outward Santa Clause well that only went yesterday, I thought I had plenty of time but the amount of detail I had to paint was staggering, some superb models more information at some point after the big day but for now all I will say is that it was a pleasure to work on them.

Cath as always is having fun with this and a big thank you to all those who have sent messages to her, it really brightens up her day when she gets them and lets face it, it's Cath who deserves all the credit for the Secret Santa as all I really do is blog a bit and get the ball rolling, after that it's all Cath so I humbly thank my sweet wife, just one of the many reasons I love her.

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

A Little D&D Post

Seems like forever since I last posted any finishes. Well a mix of lots of work, prepping for the coming challenge and painting up a group of figures for my Santa Clause present has left me a bit short of things to post.

At least I will get to post images of the Santa Clause post Christmas. Fortunately I have found time to paint this figure up for my daughter who plays a Magic Used in a D&D campaign I am running for the kids.

It's a Reaper Miniatures plastic Bones figure that my daughter choose way back when we visited Spirit Games who have a truly excellent range of wargames and boardgames products.

My daughter picked blue hair but left most of the rest to me own imagination. Some of the details really crisp such as the hair and skirt whilst other details is rather thin.

I wanted to go bold for colours, what else could I do with blue hair LOL. Most of the colours are shaded rather than using ink, the spear was an exception, mostly as I was not 100% what is supposed to be wrapped around the pointy end!

Anyways, she likes it so that's the most important part and it was a fun diversion between prepping and the high detail of the other figures I have been working on. I hope to get a couple more fantasy figures finished before the Painting Challenge begins and I doubt I will be doing any more prep before the 20th so most of my time at the table will be finishing off part painted bits and bobs.

Friday, 11 December 2015

Friday Quiz 23

After missing out last week I thought I had better get another quiz done this week.

1. What was the war between the Spartans and the Athenians between 431 and 404BC?

2. Rome was sacked by the Visgoths in 410AD, which king lead them?

3. What year did the Indian Rebellion or Sepoy Mutiny start?

4. Ignoring internal fighting, Chiang Kai Shek Ruled China whilst it fought which other country?

5. What war does the 38th parallel have significance?

Answers probably Monday, maybe Tuesday

So Tuesday it is then.

1. The Peloponnesian War

2. King Alaric

3. 10th of May 1857

4. Japan, the Communist Chinese and Government forces did in fact to some extent stop their internal war to try and fight off the Japanese.

5. Korean War

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Battle of Bautzen 1813 Part III

I left off the AAR with my Prussians just about to go onto the offensive. I would need to keep all Lee's troops on my right hand side of the table in their positions and not allow him to shift any of his divisions to support each other and the only way to do this is to engage all three divisions.

The Italians were still mostly intact so I would not be able to send in a full attack, just enough to keep him defending the bridge.

At the smaller bridge I could be more forceful as the defenders were a lot more sparse. I first sent the most forward battalion off table with some well aimed volleys.

However Blucher's brigade was forced onto the defensive as the Saxon attack heated up and looked poised to force this brigade away from the Russians.

Another angle shows the true strength  of the oncoming Saxon attack. Blucher was busy trying to reform his battle worn battalions.

The two battalions in the woods are Prussian and had been giving valuable support to a Russian attack but the battalion outside the woods is Saxon and through back to back activations (over two turns) is about to charge the forward battalions flank.

The French dragoon regiments make their presence felt by forcing some of my Russian battalions into square. My Russian reserve cavalry are on the way to try and take back the advantage.

The Wuttenberg Brigade restarted it's advance in an attempt to take advantage of my squares receiving hot fire from my Russians within the woods.

Lee sent in fresh French battalions into Bautzen and carried the outer defences. From previous games we both know that such attacks are quite unpredictable and suck up a lot of your strength.Whoever holds the town after the assault may be too weak to hold it. Getting more troops into the town will be a priority if the winner wishes to keep it.

Meanwhile a far weaker attack goes in against my left flank to keep this small brigade from joining the fight for Bautzen. The attack is losing it's cohesion as my cavalry charge forcing infantry into squares and artillery sending other battalions into retreat.

Back on the Prussian flank I throw a whole brigade up to the rivers edge and start a musket dual with the French. I manage to cause reasonable damage but not enough to attempt a crossing of the river.

Amongst the Italian battalions are a few conscript quality units, these in close quarters fighting are at quite a disadvantage but at this range are almost as good as line battalions. Their main drawback is the difficulty in rallying back their strength.

Whilst this attack column may look impressive it remains just one battalion wide and is susceptible to flank attacks and gains no support from the units behind it. However I should have just forced my way across and took the higher casualties. It could be a mistake I would regret later.

Blucher struggles to get enough troops to stop retreating and is away from the front line as the Saxons start to cause major problems for me. It is looking like this brigade will be the first to break. If I could do it over again I would have dropped the brigade back a few moves to trade space for time.

I was fortunate to have the Russian Guard Cavalry arrive in this area but it would take several turns before they would be able to join the fight.

I went over to the attack against the Saxons, this was likely to speed up the demise of the Brigade but had at least some possibility of slowing down what was starting to look as a disaster unfolding in my centre.

Meanwhile on the hill mass to the right of Bautzen both French and Russian troops clashed with both sides taking a few heavy blows but never enough for one side or the other to try and break off.

The Wurttenberg Brigade continues it's march towards the top of the hill. Russian guns continue to plague the attacking troops. In the far left you can see the mass ranks of the Imperial Guard.

I feed more troops in to Bautzen though I have lost the defence at the edge of town making the fight far more even. My only advantage being the ability to ignore a retreat result with Russian troops.

At this point things were starting to look rather unpleasant for me. Whilst I had forced Lee to move his Italians away from the lower bridge I just could not follow this up with a general attack. Lee had taken advantage of my inactivity at the larger bridge and brought up an Italian Light horse regiment and a infantry battalion. True these would not be able to co-ordinate with the French battalion they would now be a real threat to any attack across that bridge.

I took the short pause also to my advantage, bringing my Prussian cavalry across the hill to give me more targets and if things went well be in a position to force the Italian cavalry away from the bridge. However I had already lost precious time. I could and should have made this move at least two turns earlier.

My Russian Guard Cavalry make their presence felt. They first force a battalion of Saxons into square then with the aid of their horse artillery break the square. With three regiments of cavalry and guns in close range what to this point had been the most successful brigade of the French army was now in serious trouble.

It really was a turn from hell for the Saxons as Blucher's brigade scored a few victories breaking a few battalions that were already mauled from previous fighting. Now it was the turn of the Saxon's to be on the point of breaking.

The French at this point had also lost their cavalry brigade with just one regiment of Dragoons left on the table. I was able to start advancing against the now disorganised Wurttemberg brigade but the supporting cavalry were being drawn away to help in another threatened sector. Indeed I was starting to feel quite stretched and needed to have a second good turn on the trot to keep the swing of advantage going my way.

I sent in a limited counter attack, not so much to retake the half of Bautzen the French held as much as to stop Lee from taking any more of it. I managed to maul a battalion and did indeed stop his further forward movement but again I lacked the troops to make further headway without risking losing the whole town.

Another angle showing the confused melee. I am presenting my flank to the French but the nearest battalion is too weak to risk the attack. 

The French were strong enough though to drive me away from the church yard, we both had cavalry but neither was happy to send them against each other without support. We were quite literally fighting ourselves into exhaustion. 

The view from the French Imperial Guard, typical of these fine gentlemen they did not actually join the battle but still had a major influence on the battle. Perfectly placed they were marching to the sound of the guns and my weakened centre. I was diverting the Russian Guard Infantry towards them but it did look like I was trying to put a plaster on a missing limb!

Me defence on the far left remained a patchwork of units both recovering and fresh whilst Lee just did not have the troops to do more than keep them engaged. My advantage was having two regiments of cavalry able to keep the French at a slow pace but these were wearing down from aborted charge after charge.

At this point the Saxon's managed to get the first activation succeeding in breaking poor Blucher's brigade but they themselves also broke. However the loss of Blucher's infantry was a major blow. If I had managed to break the Saxon's I would have been able to rally enough battalions to go on the offensive against the large bridge releasing another brigade. This would by default have lead to the second brigade breaking and maybe crush the Italians against the table edge.

Not that this would have won me the battle. It would have meant that the Guard would have had to divert from the Russian flank and if I was able to stabilise the rest of the line possibly have fought Lee to a standstill. Not a very high possibility due to the amount of fresh quality cavalry he would have had to attack at a point of his choosing.

However this was not the case and I decided the best policy was to withdraw whilst most of my troops were not too heavily engaged. Lee was happy to accept the field of battle and halt the majority of his troops on my defensive line and gather his troops for another battle.

So Lee gets the win but it was a close one. Each of us lost enough units and have others badly beat up that if this was a campaign we would be rather careful of our forward movements before gaining reinforcement.

Great game and a great result. The rules worked fine though we are thinking of trying the rules without the ability to rally units to see how it speeds up the result and effects the game.