Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Seven Years War - Koenig Kreig

It was a while back, in 2013 that Mr Steve graced the club with his 15mm Seven Years War collection using Koenig Krieg (KK).

Since that game he has been adding to his collection of French/Saxon/Swiss and British/Hanoverians with Russians and Ottomans.

At this months meeting we got to play with the larger former collection and threw together a meeting engagement using KK.

As you can see we had quite a few toys on the table, numbering eleven brigades on each side, with the Anglo/Hanoverians lined up either side of the small village to the right of picture.

The view along the French lines with dragoons, heavy cavalry and elite 'Maison du Roi' troopers anchoring their right flank
The game was very much a throw down 'play from where you start affair' as the terrain was quickly laid out with undulating ground, a central road and small hamlet in amongst light woods.

Each side took it in turns to set up a brigade and the French planned to refuse their left, with the stronger units set up on the right and opposite the village.

The Allied cavalry deployed against the French right flank
Both sides went very traditional in placing their cavalry on the flanks and in true wargaming fashion nobody kept a brigade or two in reserve.

The cavalry clash first as the French right closes on the Allied line
The first forces to clash were the cavalry opposite each other on the French right flank, and after some early initial success the Allies gradually got the upper hand in the struggle that lasted the whole game and left victor and vanquished well and truly beaten up.

The Swiss brigade advances on the Hanoverians supporting the troops garrisoning the village
As the cavalry got stuck in the French refusal of their left meant that the first infantry fighting flared up close to the village and in the centre leaving the British and allied troops to do all the marching out on their right flank.

The Saxon brigade advances towards the Allied line

As the cavalry tussle starts in the background the two lines close around the village
The fighting around the village involved the elites from both sides as Swiss line, French and British grenadiers got up close and personal, plus the bayonet work became even busier as the French stormed into the village and started a remorseless push into the centre.

Allied cavalry forced back in the initial exchanges

Both sides make gains in the first cavalry combats opening gaps in each others line
As the fighting around the village grew in intensity, the first Allied units started to retreat which was only just held in check, with the rallied units returned back into the fray to resist the French onslaught.

The French and Swiss prepare to assault the village
The Allied force had the quality but the French made up for that in numbers and as the saying goes, numbers have a quality of their own.

The cavalry oblivious to the infantry battle away to gain superiority
The Franco-Swiss forces fighting around the village were forced to keep an eye on both flanks as the cavalry battle swung back and forth on the right and the British marched closer to the left eager to get to grips and force the issue elsewhere along the line.

The infantry close in and the volley fire commences closely followed by the steel

The British brigade advances on the the refused French centre left
British fire-power in line can be formidable but not on this occasion and time and again the French were able to force the issue in close combat.

British cavalry supported the Allied attack on the refused French left flank

And still the cavalry on the right flank went at it with the fighting lasting all day

The French force their way into town amid bitter street fighting
Suddenly a crack appeared in the centre of the Allied line as several battalions broke and fled leaving a yawning gap between the remaining Allied units.

The opposing lines go toe to toe supported where possible by light guns

The Swiss infantry push their way forward in support of the French troops fighting in the village
If the break in the line wasn't bad enough, the village was close to falling to the French and the Swiss on the other side of it had repulsed the attack of the British grenadiers.

Suddenly the Allied line around the village looked vulnerable

The British threw in their Grenadier brigade in an attempt to stem the advance of the Swiss

Meanwhile the British and their allies take the fight to the French left flank
Apart from some sharp fighting by the British cavalry versus their French counterparts out on the Allied right their was little combat affected before the collapse of the centre and as our game closed with the Allied line in some disorder there would have been little else for these British troops to achieve except to act as a rear guard to the other forces now in full retreat.

The vulnerabilities exposed in the Allied line suddenly turned into a gap as a brigade broke and fled in the centre

The Allied troops attacking on the French refused flank were now separated from their comrades around the village 

French and Swiss infantry maintain their grip on the Allied left flank as the British grenadiers are forced back

However the French did not have it all their own way as the Allied cavalry finally broke the opposition, but leaving themselves badly battered

The Allied line is broken in the centre and the village looks likely to fall into French control

The Allied line continues to lose battalions 
As you can see we had a lot of toys on the table and the rules performed reasonably well with the numbers involved, although there are some frustrations with their layout that does nothing to make a quick finding of various rules easy, this despite two of us overseeing the rule looking up process whilst the others pressed on with other parts of the game.

The British on the French left press on regardless
That said I think we all enjoyed the game they created and we whistled along with them quite well considering we hadn't played them for a while and Mr Steve's eye candy collection made the experience better.

The Allied right flank is starting to look a bit messed up

The French left flank resists the Allied assault

French troops start to clear the village

The Allied centre is defeated as French troops occupy the vacated ground
I think at a later stage we will give the collection a go with Carnage & Glory and see what we can do with them.

With their centre and left flank defeated the British and their remaining allies can only look to make a fighting withdrawal
Thanks to Greg, Steve M, Nick, Ian and Mr Steve for providing the fun.

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Devon Wargames Group at Legionary 2017

This month proved a bit of a problem for the club as our normal weekend meeting clashed with our local show 'Legionary 2017' and so several of us were over at the show running two games, with Nathan and Jason hosting the 'Pickett's Charge' 28mm ACW display game and my (JJ's) 18mm Napoleonic collection using 'Over the Hills'.

I grabbed some pictures from both our games at what was as usual a fun day out.

There is an AAR on the Over the Hills game on JJ's Wargames

and here are a few of the pictures from the game.

Normal service should be resumed for next month.


Sunday, 23 April 2017

Conquistadors - Donnybrook Style

Chas in his 'Salad Days' - Actually a fine study of a Conquistador by Barbara Weber
Game Report: Vince
Pictures: JJ

On a huge table, Chas took us back to his salad days with the Columbian Indians in the 16th century. In those days, Chas had gone native and decided to fight with the locals against the conquistadors.

Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada was leading a powerful column in search of Eldorado. Naturally I took the Spanish part, the first time I heard mention of GOLD!

Leaving a body of halberdiers, arquebusiers and mounted lancers to guard our supply column, our assault force sneaked up on the native village. Well, they sneaked as best a load of Europeans, wearing metal armour, in a jungle, can. Not to worry; we had God on our side and had brought bibles for the locals.

It was not long before the natives were firing arrows at our mule train guard and the lancers rode out to chastise them with a devastating charge. It certainly devastated our lancers and the supporting war dogs eating one of their horses didn't help matters. The light horse remembered they had left the gas on and headed back to Cartegena, Spain. Luckily the arquebusiers shot down enough natives to cool their ardour. The halberdiers took cover in the trees, as arrows rained down on them. The artillery piece supporting the attack on the village turned around and mowed down two Indians and a halberdier. Nice shooting boys.

Meanwhile, back at the village, Indians were pouring out of the stockade in an unfriendly fashion. Arrows were flying and musket balls went the other way. The Gentlemen heavy horse charged the natives, cutting down many, before dying to a man. More gold for the rest of us.

The mercenary sword and buckler men proceeded to charge the natives and cut a swathe through them with their nice steel weapons. A desperate struggle developed between Quesada with his retinue and a lot of Indians led by Indian head honcho, who was a bit tasty. Working on the "kill the easy naked guys first", Quesada & Co. cut down most of the Indians, but his retinue fell in the process.

Things looked rough for Quesada, facing near naked ninja guy (who sported a gold posing pouch) and three Indians, on his lonesome. At this point the gentlemen sword and buckler men arrived. They saved the day and sliced & diced the ‘injuns’ and top poser.

With the mule train guard, despite losing the halberdiers, mopping up their attackers and more sword and buckler types entering the village, Chas called for his litter bearers and made good his escape.

A varied game, exploring a wide range of small infantry tactics (including the mules round and round the mulberry bush tactic).

Donnybrook Rules

We played to Donnybrook rules, which gave a fast-paced game, which either side could have won. To be fair, Chas was unlucky and victory went more to tempered steel, than Spanish tactical superiority.