Wednesday, 23 November 2016

I wish i was in Broughton, away, away

So time to slip on my blue jacket and don my kepi as we head to the western theatre in the American civil war.
Russ took on the rebs defending a rail station with what turned out to be 7 brigades and plenty of artillery batteries.
My Corps of 4 brigades came down the wooded lanes whilst Ian's Corps was supposed to flank the rebs by coming down the rail line.
1st corps coming in from the right, I know where the rebs are but not their strength

2nd division on the road waiting to deploy

Reb cavalry tried to slow the union deployment but were caught and destroyed

Rebs redeploying to their left as the union 2nd division swings that way

2 union batteries on the dirt road made units in the open uncomfortable

Union cavalry tried to flank the rebs left and got caught in a pocket between 2 reb brigades
Rebs started to apply more pressure and 2 union brigades were spent.
with no sign of the union 2nd corps, the boys in blue stated to pull back to a more defendable position.
Cheers Jon, nice game

Thursday, 17 November 2016

6mm Earthworks (Improved Defences) ACW

A lot of the scenarios I have for Fire and Fury require what is referred to as improved defences. Having shopped around a bit from various 6mm websites I decided that since I'm creating my own earth fort I might as well use the same materials to make my own improved defences. Making my own will allow me to create any shape to suite any scenario. Unlike my earth fort I won't be casting these as I rather like the random shape that the DAS clay and building sand have created with each length.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Stalingrad, Budapest, Sevastapol etc.

I've been building a selection of ruined, slightly ruined and untouched buildings for use in a Stalingrad-type battle (either a one-off or operational game where the city covers several tables.  I stil need to create desolated spaces (basically ground level rubble covering a large area with the odd standing wall or wrecked tank for variety. I also need to create some mega-factories to represent the Barricady, Lazurite Chemical Works, Red October factory etc, oh and a railway marshalling yard. 

But first off I need to finish these off.  The untouched buildings need a lot more colour, the wrecked less so. And they will be split into housing, commercial and industrial areas interspersed with open ground where parks and other open spaces can be represented. Mark's Warhammer scenery has been converted into city wreckage blocks.

I need to create some parkland spaces and a hill to represent the Mamayez Kurgan - the heights over the city which were the scene of protracted conflicts during the battle.

I probably need a couple of bridges, thinking about it, and a frozen river...oh, the list goes on.  The streets are made from Poundland sticky tiles and represent rubble strewn streets.

We have to think about the ability of defenders to mine and barricade main routes into the city.  Also the opportunity for attacker and defender to nominate target objectives in the city (rather than taking whole tables in operational games).  

The buildings. Houses, apartments, industrial units and generally wrecked areas.

Close up of a ruined department store

Mark's Warhammer scenery

Some undamaged buildings 

Wrecked suburbs

Mixed commercial and housing 

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Burning vehicles...

Some photos of the burning tank markers in action.  A German column of half-tracks and trucks comes under ATG fire.  The markers show how the flow of a battle can be tracked by the wrecks left behind...

The column winds between wintry hills

A couple of vehicles take hits

More shots come in - their comrades make a run for it

The burning vehicles get left behind

As their mates scarper, the burning vehicles are left where they got hit..

Close up of the unlucky units as the lucky ones head for safety

The only issue we can see with these is one of getting in the way (e.g. should a vehicle or infantry stand cross the path of one of these).  Simply put, the burning vehicle is moved to accommodate the 'live' stand and moved back if possible once the 'live' stand has moved on.  Other than that, as you can see, they do help to illustrate the ebb and flow of battle - especially when vehicles of both combatants are included...

There are about 30 markers made up which should be more than sufficient for an operational game.

Dragons Teeth in 6mm

With some Russian tanks for a sense of scale. These are 6mm Heroics and Ros T34's.

Start, middle and finished.

I've been working on developing dragons teeth for WW2 wargaming in 6mm for our operational games. Trying to represent large concrete pyramids is not that easy so I've gone for more symbolic than accurate.  A tank could easily roll over one of these in real life but symbolically they seem to work.

The pyramids are metal studs used in leatherwork (any punks out there??). The spiky bits are bent outwards to provide a more stable base (small pliers and thick skin required!). These are then PVA'd to a standard base 9cm long by 3cm deep. 

Learning by trial and error, I then prime the base in grey, paint the pyramids a darker grey then drybrush them, Then flock once the pyramids are dry.  Trust me, this is the best option.  

Of course these can be adapted to any theatre (desert, winter etc,).  Fairly easy and cheap to make - the studs come in packs if 100 so enough to make 11 bases per pack.  We need quite a few for an operational battle (to cross 3-4 tables around 4 feet wide so ease of manufacture is key. 

Sunday, 13 November 2016

River lines, minefields and dragons-teeth oh my!

Operational rules for crossing major barriers.

Image result for dragon's teeth

I am developing my WW2 North Africa armies for operational games and one of the items I want to address are minefields.  These are hugely important in the desert campaigns and were used extensively by both sides.  I ran my ideas past Mark over the weekend and we actually came up with a generic rule for all major barriers which would have influenced all our previous games significantly.

In the desert most minefields are anti-tank which do not impede infantry movement.  However, it was very difficult for infantry to move far beyond the minefields without clearing a path for their support weapons and supplies; how best do I represent this?

Any infantry that cannot trace a clear line of supply will shoot on a -1 (but does not effect close combat). Simple!

Now, let's take it another step further.  Any troops that cannot trace a line of supply over a major barrier; river, minefield, dragons teeth, antitank ditch etc will also shoot on a -1.  Thus in our last game the paras would have been shooting on a -1 until I had built bridges (which I would have needed to ensure were not under direct fire) to relieve them.  If their anti-tank was a 6 against tigers this would have been further reduced to an 11 or 12 to kill.  This makes bold use of paras more dangerous but it would also have been the same for infantry crossing by buffalo!

Then let's take it even further.  Any troops which cannot trace a line of supply to their reserve/base table are also shooting on a -1.  This encourages wide sweeping counter attacks, which I expect to see in the desert, but would have effected our second operational game when Jon would have been rewarded with his wide outflanking move against Phil's rear which would also have supported Russ' counter attack with the AA battalion!

I did consider making any unit cut off revert to hold orders but this would prevent break outs.

Coupled with the decision to limit aircraft to a ratio of 5;3 I think this would address the issues from the last game.  Let me know what everyone thinks.

Friday, 11 November 2016

Thursday night game

Spearhead scenario, Americans must conduct a raid into axis territory and free the prisoners held at the far complex
the prison, allies get a point for each truck the get home

Supply dump, secondary objective, 2 points if detroyed

Airborne secure the bridge

airborne try to take the prison and supply dump

2nd battalion secure the first section

Allied reinforcements punching thru

German patrols move to the sound of action

prison still in German hands

Another German patrol arrives

Supply dump secure

German patrol secures exit bridge
this could be a disaster!

game end allies fail to free the prisoners and would have to fight their way out .