24 November 2015

More French for Sale: Cavalry and Artillery

My sell off has been pretty successful and all that is left are half of the French. Most of the first rate infantry is gone, what is left is some plastic Victrix and Perry as well as one regiment of Foundry legere. More about these later.

What I would like to sell now is the remaining 5 units of cavalry and one remaining battery of artillery. The cavalry are quite nice and I believe painted to a fairly well war-games standard. The artillery are some nice cannon but I believe the figures are Bicorne, a particularly nasty brand and thus are going for a song.

If someone comes along and buys all six units then 10% off and free shipping. Otherwise paypal only and shipping by USPS Priority Post. Shipping will vary from 6-12$ depending on the box size.

All on 40x45mm Litko bases. $8-9 per figure.

Bacon Miniatures 4 battery of 3 cannon and 1 howitzer
10 line lancers by Foundry, somewhat early painting so priced accordingly.
14 Guard Chasseurs and Mameluks by Foundry, nicely painted
8 Plastic Dragoons from Perry, well painted.
8 Plastic Carabiniers from Perry, well painted.
12 Plastic Cuirassiers from Perry, well painted.

These are very well priced, the cost for all 6 units is $450 with Free Shipping.

21 November 2015

Closing the Gap: Panthers on the Prowl!

Major Currie's has now advanced his forces to the centre of St Lambert. He has taken some loses, almost 20% of his men and one of his Shermans. He now has to face some heavy armour.....the Sd.Kfz. 171 Panther.
This is a challenging scenario for the Canadians, they have to force the Germans to withdraw or suffer a massive Morale Failure. The Germans positions start at almost the the centre of the board, there is lots of hard cover. 
Here is our starting positions. Fortunately for the Canadians they get to throw a d6 for some free moves.
Luckily I get a 5, which allows me to lock down Germans almost immediately
Here we can see the 6 JOP's. The Canadians are within 6" of two houses and thus can deploy into both houses at the crossroads that give an excellent LOS on the German positions. German Morale is at 9 and Canadian Morale (had to take a -1 as the men's opinion was low) is at 8 at game start. 
Mike has taken a Sd.Kfz 250 HT with a JL and a LMG team in addition to the Panther, I take a Medium Mortar, a HMG Team, and Achilles (there is no other way I can attempt to take out the Panther). I also take a medic to protect my SL. Unlike our last game my dicing is pretty good and I can quickly place the FO with a infantry section and a SL in the stone house that controls the crossroads. I also plop down my 3rd section behind the wall. Mike places Squad 1 in the stone house. My Bren team behind the wall takes some shock, but fortunately no kills. My SL is the activated he calls up the mortar. The Canadian Section in the house fires at the German squad and scores a kill. Mike throws to check if the leader is hit, he fires a 1 and then tests to see what happens. He fires a 6, the JL is killed! A good start for the Canadians. Mike then places the Halftrack with the LMG team on the road but can not get a clear shot, he brings in a LMG team and fires at the Bren team behind the wall as does his leaderless 1st squad. The Bren team is now at significant shock. Time to move off the wall and retreat into the wood. Mortars are called. An aiming shot is off 100 yds. The HT now moves into position and fires at the Canadian section in the house. One man is killed. No other casualties. Back to the Canadians, more good command dice. The barrage lands and the German squad in the house take more casualties. The Panther is hit but suffers no damage. The HMG team in the the other house fires at the LMG team behind the house, they are all killed. The German morale is down to 7. Aside from the LMG team in the HT, the Germans are all under the barrage, the HT fires and misses. Back to the Canadians, the Barrage is again activated but is moved 100 yds. to the right, the HT takes damage and is now under the barrage. Back to the Germans, they decide to make a tactical withdrawal and leave the town centre to the Canadians................ game over. A Canadian Victory!
Well my men's opinion has gone up. Overall a good victory but the German morale on the campaign tracker is still quite high, it would have been nice to get a crack at the Panther and drop the German morale by another 2. 

15 November 2015

Closing the Gap: A New Chain of Command Campaign

St Lambert, 19 August 1944. The Canadian officer on the left holding the pistol is Major David Currie.  He commanded a combined force of armour (the South Alberta Regiment) and infantry (the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders). This was the last action in Operation Tractable which finally closed the Falaise Gap to prevent German forces retreating back to the Fatherland. For his heroism at St Lambert-sur-Dives, he was awarded the Victoria Cross.
We had our second game in our August 1944 Falasie Gap campaign yesterday. Mike (the Germans) invited me to Rhode Island for the game and it was a nice drive on a beautiful morning. Mike has quite the gaming set up in his house and we had a great game. Additionally his wife put on a superb lunch that was much appreciated.

Scenario 1: The Road to St Lambert

We played the first game in the campaign about 3 weeks ago, I am afraid I took no photos. Mike sent me one a few days ago but it somehow or another got deleted. I had actually played this game once and presented it on Gamesday at the Hobby Bunker in August. The terrain was pretty well laid out as you can see. The game resulted in a Canadian Victory, although I foolishly took a lot of casualties which is not good in this campaign. Here is our campaign tracker after the first scenario.

Scenario 2: Entering the Town

In our second scenario, Major Currie makes his first attempt to enter St Lambert on the morning of August 19, 1944. The Germans are well positioned and they have some Panzer IV's ready for action. This is a difficult scenario for the Canadians as they have to cross the River Dives, which is quite deep and counts as a major obstacle in CoC. For victory, the Canadians needed to secure a JOP in the greyed German zone.

Well on to the game, I seldom remember to take photos during a game, but I did get some at the start.
Set up
Patrol Phase
Canadian JOP's
German JOP's with the target JOP in Blue
First advance by Canadians was doomed.
Canadian Plan and German Defenses
For supports, I took a UC section with a JL, Piat team as well as a Bren team. I also took a FO with an off-table medium mortar team. Mike took a HMG team. According to the campaign rules, I had a Sherman and Mike had a Panzer IV.

I had a pretty straight forward plan, and that was to secure victory in this scenario with my supporting troops and preserve my core platoon as I had foolish squandered half a section in my first game. I would have liked to have got a JOP across the river, but at least 2 of them were on the edge but in retrospect, I am not sure how well this served me. The game started off poorly for me with a 8 on my Morale throw with Mike getting an 11. The dice were tossed, and laid down my smallest section. On Mike's first throw he got a treble 6 and that was it for them with a JL killed. Horrible throws on the Morale table ended up with me going down to a 6 on the first turn of the game! Not looking good.

I still felt my plan was good and set it into place as you can see in the last photo above. I was able to deploy my FO fairly quickly with a 2" mortar section throwing out smoke rounds. I also deployed a full section and my Platoon Sergeant behind the hedge. With this position they had good LOS for both the medium and small mortars and quickly laid down smoke to obscure the German squad 1's LOS to my combined section/mortar teams. I was then able to quickly get out a full barrage on top the German first squad as well as the HMG team in the house. 

Time to advance the Sherman to take a shot at the Panzer if it appeared on the road. Mike throws another double 6 as well as completing a CoC Dice, he ends the turn and my Sherman is exposed to the Panzer and kaboom, it is taken out. At this point I have no real antitank weapons aside from 2 Piats! One get laid down in the hedge, but is too far away to shoot. I successfully call up another mortar barrage and again it is well placed and lands on the road reigning down further mayhem on the HMG team, German squad 1 and more importantly on the road. I bring on my UC section, as you can see the plan is to dash over the bridge and then advance on the German left flank which is poorly protected (the arrow on the photo above somewhat incorrect in that UC section has to cross the bridge and then verve to the left). I have a great throw and the section gets all the way to the bridge on their first move. Mike's turn, he throw yet another treble 6; the turn ends, the barrage and smoke again disappear, and he is now able to lay down suppressive fire on the UC section with the HMG team as well as fire the Panzer's cannon. The advance has been thwarted and Major Currie orders a tactical withdrawal. A German victory.

Well it was really a fun game the combination of Mike's excellent defensive tactics as well as some unlucky die rendered an outcome unfavorable to the Canadians. But my core platoon was kept essentially intact from the the first scenario and I will start the third scenario with the same number of men as the second. I was a little unlucky on the post game process and my Men's Opinion of my leadership has plunged and I am now -1 on my next force morale. Mike was also able to bring the campaign force morale tracker up to it's base of 10 with the victory and the destruction of the Sherman. Our next game is this coming Saturday, time to shine up the dice.

08 November 2015

Another GB-CoC Playtest: Barossa

Myself and Adam got another chance to test the General Bonaparte meets Chain of Command ruleset last Thursday. The playtest version is now at v2.4 and is really coming together. It had been 2-3 months since we played the rules so they were a little rusty in the first turn or 2, but then things came together and the game moved along. This game was based on the Battle of Barossa with some heavy substitution in the OB because of my figure collection but for those who are interested in an authentic OB set up for GB-CoC one can download a version here.

You can see that we got through several turns, it was a real back and forth game with cavalry, unusually playing a significant part. An excellent Action Report is on Adam's blog The Fencing Frog. We tried Adam's modified movement rules and they worked well. There was some discomfort with the range of the variable movement as now in the ruleset. For example, infantry battalions in column move 3d6, Adam has adjusted this to 2d6+4" thus adjusting the possible movement from 3"-18" to 6"-16". This played out well, we will have to see how the other play testers feel about this.

Overall, I am still enormously impressed by the rules. They play very well and the mechanisms are quite simple and the game moves smoothly. My main observation from this game is that it is very difficult to play a division per side game with 28mm figures on a 4x6' terrain. It really confirmed my choice to shift to 18mm Napoleonic gaming for this size terrain (I find this the most convenient size to transport and the club has mostly similarly sized tables).

Still some questions about ZOC and supports that we are hammering out in the play test group now. I have also put together an FAQ which one can download here. I will try to keep it updated. Finally a photo from the game showing the action.

For Sale
I have placed several French Units on TMP or Ebay. For readers of my blog however special pricing is available......just make an offer.
French Ligne Crusader Miniatures $175
French Legere Front Rank Miniatures $525 (SOLD)
French Guard Chasseurs and Mameluks Wargames Foundry $180
Anhalt-Dessau Line Perry Plastics $120
French Lanciers Wargames Foundry $120
French Vieux Garde Victrix Plastics $125

28 October 2015

A Scary Plan...................has Succeeded

Well everything that was for sale is sold. This included my Prussian and Austrian armies plus their respective lead piles. Also surprisingly, the Hanoverian Brigade sold quickly. With these funds I can replace my present French and Anglo-Portuguese armies with painted 18mm AB miniatures unit for unit. I received my first AB unit from Spain today and the painting has exceeded my expectations, I am chuffed.

After discussion with my friend Iannick in Montreal (he only pleaded a bit), I have decided to keep my Anglo-Portuguese Army and my Brunswick Corps in 28 mm. It is only fair, as Iannick really was my impetus early on to paint 2700 Napoleonics. Oddly enough he was also babbling something about 6mm, but we will keep that under wraps for now!

Well that leaves almost 1000 French to get rid. I have decided now that since I have the money to essentially fund almost a year of commission painting from the initial sell off, the French collection will go at a more controlled rate. The first battalion, the 54e ligne is now up on TMP. This is really the best painted unit in the collection except for maybe the 13e legere. 

24 October 2015

Chronic Iohannes: Siege Of Cataractonium, A Dux Campaign comes to an End

Myself and Adam played another game in our Dux Britannarium campaign this past Thursday. It had been almost 2 months since our last game, but surprisingly the rules were quite fresh in both our minds. As usual, there was some confusion about supports in combat but this is really not unusual in this rule set. As much fun as the campaign was, the ruleset is little work, and it is quite difficult at times to get a clear answer to a question.

Not withstanding we had a great campaign which went from March 550AD to October 555AD, the Britons lost provinces and gained them back, the Saxon Warlord Cuthwolf rose to become a king, while Antoninus became a Legatus. Despite this difference in status they came head to head in front of the gates of Cataractonium. As usual Adam has done a great job of documenting the battle and I will refer you to his blog The Fencing Frog for some excellent photo and commentary.

I think it only fitting to present a short summary of the action from the Briton's perspective.

It was a chilly morning in late October, somewhat like this morning in Salem, Massachussetts almost 1500 years later, frost was in the air and a few snow flakes were falling. The wretched inhabitants of Cataractonium had now held out for 7 months against the continued onslaught of Cuthwolf the Red's blood thirsty Saxons. Food was running out and winter was coming. More and more Saxons were arriving to press the siege and bring it to a conclusion before the heavy snows started to fall in the Kingdom of the Old North. By now, Cuthwolf's warband had increased from 34 men to 48 men and included a foul smelling Bard as well as a demonic looking Wicca. Cuthwulf was accompanied by his man mountain champion Wulfric, as well the Nobles Wulfgeat and Eaglmund, both wodenborn.

Suddenly horns were heard from the south, and the far sighted of the besieged Britons could soon see the red cruciate emblazoned standards of their noble lord Antoninus. Was relief at hand, was their misery finally to be lifted? The Legatus had arrived and with him, thanks to the support of his  liege lord King Peredur Longspear, he had 48 hardy Britons in his force. With him was his Champion Cyneric as well as the Nobles Aefric and Morcant, who recently had been ransomed from the Saxons. The Bard Euphonius was detailing the exploits of his Lord in extremely long epic poem, while I, the Priest Iohannes was there of course to chronicle this, one of my Lord's great battles.

Both the Saxons and the Britons faced off: Songs were sang, mead was drank and champions engaged in single combat, unfortunately our Lord's exploits were drowned out by the raucous Saxons and Cuthwolf came out with twice the authority of Antoninus and Cyneric was wounded  (essentially the Saxon Lord started the battle with 4CI and a command range of 12" while The Briton Lord has his CI reduced to 2 with a command range of 6", additionally the Briton champion added only 1d6 to any fight he was involved in. Starting morale was 9 for both sides with both holding 6 Fate Cards at the start of the game).

Antoninus knew that his strength lay in his shield-wall , as well as the blood thirsty nature of his Saxon adversary. He had to appear weak in order to entice the Saxon into attacking but at the same time be able to maneuver in out out of his shield-wall at opportune moments. At the same time he had to be cautious as both he and his champion were unable to fight at their usual ability as well as voice being weakened.  Clearly his forces had not to be separated.

The Britons were able to slowly maneuver into two back to back formations, one of the elite and warriors and one of levy. This formation easily formed into a triangle when one of it's flanks was threatened, by breaking off the warriors on the Briton left flank to confront a threatening Saxon mob. The dice gods were on the side of the Britons and Saxon losses rapidly dropped their morale to 0, while the Britons had lost only 8 men. 

Victory to the Britons, the siege was lifted and the Saxons were vanquished from our shores, the campaign was over.

Well it was a great campaign; it was our second, the previous being an ACW using the Longstreet rules, which Adam won.

So we are 1 to 1, what is next I wonder?

Many thanks to Adam, he started the campaign many months ago using borrowed figures but was able to paint and field a complete Saxon force by it's end.

22 October 2015

A Scary Plan............maybe Succeeding

Well the Austrians and Prussians are gone. I have been able to use the proceeds to duplicate my French Army unit for unit in painted 18mm AB miniatures as well as get at least a British Division. I am really pleased. All I have to do is wait 3 months!
With this sale I have decided to put up my  Front Rank Austrian and Calpe Prussian Lead Piles.
A Real Calpe Pile!

These are both going at more then 50% off with free shipping.

Up next painted is the 1st Hanoverian Brigade at Waterloo on Ebay.

Well that leaves the French, many of which can be seen here, almost 1000 figures, any offers?

15 October 2015

Scary New Plan........Maybe

Over the last 10 years I have painted some 2700 28mm Napoleonics. Generally they are based 6 figures to 40x40mm bases in 4 stand units. Recently have felt that maybe the units should be 6 stands.

What to do........should I rebase?!!!!!!!!

At the same time two more issues have come to the forefront. Storage and terrain size. Even though I have a big gaming space the Napoleonics are consuming a considerable proportion of it and at the same time are seldom used. I also really want to stick to gaming on 4x6 terrains which I now have well sorted and transportable.

I have also found in my recent games of GBCoC and Lasalle, I would like to have a slightly larger armies on the table then I can get with the 40x40mm bases. Increasing the unit size to 6 stands essentially increases the footprint by 50%. That is not going to work on a 4x6' table.

My recent foray in ACW have shown me the advantages of 15-18 mm armies, I have a considerably sized Union army which is in one small box.

While these thoughts have been going through my head, I have been looking at painted 18 mm AB Napoleonic units that are for sale. Essentially well painted 6 stand infantry units are available for around $100. I am not crazy enough to want to start painting 18 mm Napoleonics!

So what to do? I suppose it comes down to whether in my 60th year, I want to paint or game. I like painting and I have enjoyed painting 28 mm figures and I am unlikely to stop, but I do like gaming more. For gaming tactical level Napoleonics there does appear to be an advantage with 18mm over 28mm, especially in respect to transportability and terrain size.


  • Nice shiny new armies
  • Less storage space needed
  • Easier to transport
  • Tactical Napoleonic gaming with bigger armies on smaller tables
  • I do not have a big lead pile, but what I  have I would have to sell, so I could stop looking at it
  • No rebasing


  • The two groups (BTB and Montreal) with whom I game, have 28 mm Napoleonics
  • Difficulty in selling my present collection in large lots quickly
  • The purchase of 18 mm painted units is contingent on a neutral cash flow
  • The work of packing up armies to mail


  • Sell the Austrian Brigade, I really have little interest in this army, this will tell me how hard it will be to get rid of my Napoleonics. They are on eBay now.
  • If this is successful, sell the Prussian Division next. It is going to be hard for me to let go, as this is my favourite army and by far the best painted force I have. But at the same time my main Napoleonic compatriots in Montreal are not that interested in Waterloo.
  • I would follow this with the French, as again Iannick in Montreal has a large French army.
  • Save my British and Allies for last, and may end up keeping them so I can fight Iannick's French.
So that is all, I suspect it will all come to naught.

27 September 2015

USMC Pacific Army List (1942-43) for Chain of Command

I have to admit that I never thought I would be researching the USMC, but over the last several days I have been doing exactly that. My son has played a couple of games of CoC with me recently and expressed interest in gaming the Solomon's campaign in the Pacific. This campaign was not covered in the basic CoC army lists nor has there been a player generated list for this period. There was one list for 1944-45 period but the USMC platoon organisation changed from a Type D to Type E in mid 1943, so this was not really accurate. There is an official list for the Japanese in the Far East in 1941-42 which contains the Type B organisation which will work for the Solomon's campaign. I have to admit it was quite interesting to read about this period and I think it will make for some excellent gaming.

Update: Here is the final version which has undergone extensive changes since first uploaded on September 16.

Update 2: After review by Rich Clarke from TFL, the crew for a BAR was changed to one man rather then 2. 

You can download a PDF here.

07 September 2015

Some Armour

I finally got around to taking some photos of some WWII armour I painted over the summer. They are all 1/72 in plastic except one vehicle which is resin. As campaigns for Chain of Command appear, more vehicles are always required, but my impetus for painting most of these AFV's was this blog post on Wargaming with Silver Whistle. The post describes a slight variation on Chain of Command with essentially all armour forces. I was immediately attracted as I felt it was a great way to tune up on the AFV rules in CoC and to paint some vehicles that I would not usually need. It is well worth looking at this blog just for the terrain which is really the best I have seen. It was a struggle to find some of the vehicles in 1/72 but I did manage.
First up is a couple of Panthers from Armourfast. Two in a box, so quite cheap.
The vehicles are somewhat flimsy and under detailed but they are quite reasonable for wargaming and more importantly they are to scale.
The stowage is added and is from Value Gear an excellent supplier of 1/72 resins extras.
Next up is a couple of Tiger 1's, these are from Italeri and are their new rapid line for wargamers.
They really are quite excellent and easily match PSC in quality.
They also come with decals and I think may work out to be a little cheaper then PSC.
This Humber Mk II Armoured car was a little tough to find in 1/72. 
This is a Hasegawa Model, I usually stay away from Modeler's Models as there are too many pieces but this was OK and came out quite nicely. Again supplied with decals which is a plus.

Another Italeri Model, a Sd.Kfz 234 Puma.
This model was not sold as a fast build, but did have a fast build option. I am really quite impressed with Italeri. They have some very nice models which are well detailed and supplied with nice decals.
Here is a PSC Sd.Kfz 250/1. This is also a real quality kit with 3 models.
There are options to build the /1, 7, 9, 10 and 11 versions. really quite impressive.
Also from PSC is a Marder, another excellent kit.
Options to build a Panzer 38 and either the Sd.Kfz 138 or 139 versions of the Marder. Troops are included.
This little chap was the real challenge. The Silver Whistle had listed a Tetrach Light Tank in the British OB.
I finally found a resin Locust M22 from Planet Models. Nice little model, expensive but I am happy I added it.
Tiny little tank, transported by glider. Here it is next to a PSC Firefly and it is indeed to scale.