My Kingdom for la Bricole and other tales


la Bricole

There used to be a pleasant Napoleonic wargaming focussed forum called la Bricole. By no means could the post count be called prolific but it was a thoroughly happy and agreeable place with none of the back biting to be seen in some other places.

A little history lesson – at least history retold how von Peter himself remembers it:

1. The first la Bricole was presented to the world by ArchiducCharles, aka Iannick Martin, of Clash of Nations fame. The aim of the forum was to be a friendly Napoleonic gaming and related topics meeting place. Incidentally Iannick hails from Canada. Hailing from Canada is possibly of little consequence (meant in the nicest possible way of course!) except that …

2. …spookily Iannick’s successor as master and benefactor of la Bricole is also of Canadian extraction – even if he is currently domiciled in Japan. Spooky huh?! Cunningly hiding his identity behind the moniker Olsuviev we shall call him Robert Swan. For further insights into the mind of a benefactor Robert runs several blogs including Serrez les Rangs! and Skoryi Szag.

Upon the transfer of the mantle of la Bricole benefactor Robert created a brand new la Bricole. Transfer from the first to the second la Bricole was carefully managed. Forum member numbers continue a slow increase though the forum never attains a high post rate. It remained a friendly and knowledgable establishment however. Several painting competitions were run. These are not overtly competitive in nature and were run with the aim of assisting forum members to complete some painting. von Peter himself has a pang or two of guilt over these competitions. He entered one competition but got no where near completing his entry. It seemed that painting competitions were not his ‘thing’. They were however the ‘thing’ of some of the other forum members with some wonderful vignettes and units created. Sadly the address of this forum is now irrelevant as it no longer exists! <shock horror>

first 5 figs of 3:4 Esast Prussian landwehr

Above: the 5 completed figures of the abortive first and only painting competition entry of von Peter himself. The entry was to be the 3rd battalion of the 4th East Prussian Landwehr Regiment modelled as a shot up firing line. The completed battalion – should it ever be completed! – is planned to contain 20 figures … so only 15 to go then. In defence of von Peter himself it must be pointed out that the mounted officer’s horse is also completely painted now!!  8O)

3. 16 May 2014 an unobtrusive email arrives in an email box that von Peter himself does not necessarily monitor on a daily basis. Later a detailed examination of this email would reveal that the old dearly beloved la Bricole had been unceremoniously and unexpectedly kidnapped and moved to another forum address and engine. The email also contained the address of the new forum and von Peter’s new id and password. Simultaneously with the as yet unread email von Peter himself noticed that the old la Bricole has gone off the air. Oh well, such things were not unheard of – it will soon be back were the sage thoughts of von Peter himself. After a while of fruitless waiting von Peter himself starts to get a little worried and asks around as to what has become of la Bricole and is alerted to the new third rendition of La Bricole. Thanks Bryce for the heads up.

It appears that no one, including Robert was expecting the kidnapping. I guess that’s the thing with kidnappings. They aren’t expected!  8O)  Robert lost much of his forum customisations – some of which he is bravely slowly reinstating – and the forum lost many of its members.

The loss of the members is is the crux of this long winded rant. la Bricole may not have had a high transaction count but it was a friendly forum in a world where forums often seem to turn on themselves. If la Bricole is to rise from the ashes then the old members need to find their way back – and perhaps even some new members sign up – and postings need to occur. It appears that the main focus will expand from Napoleonics to a wider Horse & Musket but whatever there is a section of the forum for those periods outside the norm.

So old members or prospective new members please feel free to pay a visitation to the new la Bricole at …

Please be aware that Robert is slowly tidying up the place. The kidnapping act included the transfer of the old posts so there is some interesting ‘stuff’ hidden in there and perchance you may choose to add to a thread or even start a new one.

More on The Great Wargaming Survey

Karwansaray Publishers the publishers of …

magazines have released a second article on the results of their recently conducted survey on wargamers and their habits –  Painting and playing (survey results pt2).

One should take particular note of the last sentence in the article. It is of a particularly  noteworthy nature. Oh the fame … the glory …  8O)


Call to Arms 2014

The weekend just gone was occupied by the local annual wargaming convention – Call to Arms – hosted by the Wellington Warlords. This convention used to be a regular event for von Peter himself but not so now-a-days for a variety of reasons. This does not preclude a royal(!) visitation though. A shame that some nameless plonker would only remember to take his camera while parking his car at the venue!! <mutter mutter>. What must one do to get good help these days?!  8O)

Competitions scheduled to run were …

  • DBMM
  • Field of Glory
  • Flames of War
  • Malifaux
  • Skirmish Sangin
  • Warhammer Fantasy Battle
  • Warhammer 40,000
  • X-Wing.

Of more interest to von Peter himself were the demonstration games. On the Saturday these included a large multiplayer 28mm Napoleonic game based on the slugfest that was the southern front at the Battle of Leipzig using Black Powder rules. What more can one say than the players seemed to be enjoying themselves and the Allies won!

Next door a large Pulp game was being played. Various western nations adventuring parties and some Egyptian Cultists all trying to make their way through a middle eastern town to get the prize which was secreted away in the bowels of a multi level pyramid. Biplanes, omnibuses and all sorts of wackiness seemed to be in order. A mighty effort from Raymond and co.

Although officially a competition Craig & co were playing individual but linked games of Skirmish Sangin. The terrain was great and there were plenty of smiles while von Peter himself was there for a short stopover. Craig’s brother Brent was in attendance – aka Greater Queeg and colouring in artist for von Peter’s Napoleonic Russians – so it was good to get to say hello.

von Peter himself may not have played but he still managed to add a little to the convention. His Napoleonic Austrian heavy cavalry – two kuirassiere and a dragoon regiment – put in an appearance at the Leipzig game and his roads were trodden and driven over on the Skirmish Sangin tables.

Perry Miniatures Bavarians

These have been coming for a while now and now they’re here. If you like your Bavarians with a taste of Perry then your time has come … or at least started as this is obviously not the end of the Perry Miniatures Napoleonic Bavarian range.

Perry Bavarian Line or Light Infantry Marching in overalls

Above: BAV 7 Line Light Infantry marching, overalls – picture borrowed from the Perry’s site.

The initial Bavarian release …

The Bavarian Army 1809-14
28mm metal figures designed by Alan Perry

BAV 1 High Command mounted ( Wrede, Deroy and the Crown Prince)
BAV 2 Mounted Staff
BAV 3 Line Infantry command advancing, overalls  1809
BAV 4 Light Infantry command advancing, overalls  1809
BAV 5 Line Infantry command advancing, overalls  1812
BAV 6 Light Infantry command advancing, overalls  1812
BAV 7Line/ Light Infantry marching, overalls
BAV 8 Grenadiers/Carabiniers marching, overalls
BAV 9 Schützen marching, overalls
BAV 10 Line Infantry command standing, overalls  1809
BAV 11 Light Infantry command standing, overalls  1809
BAV 12 Line Infantry command standing, overalls  1812
BAV 13 Light Infantry command standing, overalls  1812
BAV 14 Line/Light Infantry skirmishing/ firing line, overalls
BAV 15 Grendadiers/Carbiniers skirmishing/ firing line, overalls
BAV 16 Schützen skirmishing, overalls


Above: BAV 1 High Command mounted ( Wrede, Deroy and the Crown Prince) – picture borrowed from the Perry’s site.


The end of another post. von Peter himself really must update his stock of photos to add a little colour and interest to the drab writing!  8O)

Until we meet again …

von Peter himself

10 thoughts on “My Kingdom for la Bricole and other tales

  1. I for one am very happy, that La Bricole is back. As you say… one of the best and friendliest Napoleonic sites one can expect. I saw that strange eMail back then, but to be honest, it smelled so much like spoofing (or in this case actually kidnapping) that I chose to ignore it. So I was immensely happy when Robert announced the return of La Bricole a couple of weeks ago.

    On the other topic. I saw the Perry Bavarians the other day and I have to say I was less than impressed. For one, I had hoped they would go plastic with this one. The large size of Bavarian regiments and the love many people hold for this nation when it comes to Napoleonic Wargaming would have warranted it in my humble opinion. But that was not to be and it was just my personal expectation.
    So I looked at the minis. Nothing about the infantry did strike me as exceptional. The poses are somewhat lame, even for marching troops. I might eventually get me a pack or two to add diversity to the (Perry sculpted) Bavarians from Foundry, but otherwise I will rather buy more Front Rank.
    The high command and staff packs do look nice, but again nothing exceptional or even worse rehashes of poses used for the French sets. As a result, I was rather disappointed by their first large release after they have left GW to concentrate on their own company.
    They did such nice things about two years ago when they did the Russian, French and Austrian carts and forges. Where has that inspiration gone these days? 😦

    • Hello Burkhard

      I have yet to see any Perry Bavarians in the flesh but I am very unlikely to buy any as I have the Bavarians that I need and am happy with them. Maybe a wagon or maybe a limber … though the limber will likely look a little miniaturised vs my Front Rankers.
      In fact most of my Napoleonic Perry figures are the ancillaries of war – wagons etc. I have bought the occasional mounted leader pack looking for a bit of variety but I’d have to say that I have been a little disappointed with the one piece horse and rider figures as they are all a little two dimensional for my liking. Also many of their slender swords have arrived looking more like corkscrews than weapons of war and I suspect unravelling & straightening them will result in breakages. None have yet made it out of their little black boxes.

      von Peter himself

  2. Yes La Bricole is back – which is good news. I suppose it is down to us lot to make it work. As long as it stays put this time!
    I too am sort of disappointed with Perry Bavarians. Is this a sign of their complacency with animation? I imagine that they use the same basic ‘Perry standard’ dollies as the basis rather than make new figures from scratch I have got the Bavarian looters from Foundry which they did and I was hoping for some equally animated marching infantry to do a dio for my own amusement. Ideally I would like to use the Old Glory marching figs as they seem to have a sense of urgency about them, but having to buy 30 odd when I only want about 8 makes this new range a lost opportunity for me. I would never contemplate buying plastic (although I have managed to pick up the odd sprue for conversions) as I am always dissatisfied with the quality when compared to metal.

    • Hello Atelier-Robin

      My Napoleonic armies tent to be based on the figures from one manufacturer. I like a consistent look within an army. The perry figures do not provide the figures for any of my Napoleonic armies for several reasons. Some armies were started before the Perry’s were selling their Napoleonic wares. I’ve not been overly moved by some of their rank & file offerings and everyone else seems to have Perry figures so my armies become a little bit more unique. I guess it doesn’t hurt to support some of the other wargaming manufacturers out there either.

      I’m not big into plastics. I’ve nothing against them as such and obviously their pricing lowers the cost of 28mm gaming which can’t be a bad thing. Though Henry Hyde may scoff I’m happier with the heft of my metal figures. And I have a slight concern for the longevity of the finer bits of the plastic figures. Anyway it is all rather moot as I’m yet to be tempted by any Napoleonic box of plastic figures.

      Having said that I do have a few boxes of plastic ACW figures! A secondary collection and one in which I’ve not been strongly attracted to any metals.

      BTW, I liked your exploding fusiliers. for those who have not yet seen them.

      von Peter himself

  3. Another intriguing post your VonShip! Thanks for setting us straight on the current situation regarding the tenacious ‘La Bricole’ – I will have a long around and see if its for me, but I must confess I did little enough to support the first iteration…I guess we get the forums we deserve! I have to say I agree wholeheartedly with Burkhard about the plastic Bavarians, quite disappointed, but I daresay I will add some of these to the lead pile in due course!

    • My Dear Sparkles

      la Bricole was a stressless sort of place … unlike some!

      Very sage like words – “we get the forums we deserve”. You may have hit the proverbial nail on the proverbial head with the proverbial hammer. It may be that the golden age of forums has passed. Once upon a time forums were the only game in town for most but now WordPress, Blogger etc have made running ones own individual blog as easy as falling off a log and much effort (both producing and reading) is going the way of blogs and not so much forums.

      We’ll see what happens to la Bricole. At least it’s downfall was not down to a foolish petulant ego driven schism of the membership … unlike some! 8O)

      von Peter himself

    • Hello Traj

      What it is to have an adoring and demanding clientele! 8O)

      More seriously – what can I say. You just can’t get good help these days.

      Yes von Peter himself has been somewhat slack. In his defence he will say that he has started working on the next post. Maybe in a few days the whirling of great machineries will produce some output for all to marvel over.

      von Peter himself

  4. Interesting and diverse post. I enjoyed the history lesson on La Bricole. I believe you are right in that the Forum format best days are behind it. Between blogs community and social medias, the whole “community” aspect of the Forum is less needed. And Forums tend to be a lot more work than the alternatives.

    I think the Wargames Website did well in also adding hobby news to its “repertoire”, as this is still needed and makes it relevant. As for La Bricole, it stil allows us to stay connected, and I think that’s what’s matter.

    I have to agree with others about the Bavarians, I’m underwhelmed. But to be blunt I find the Perry’s have been cutting corners for a while now and avoided some criticism because of their reputation. In the last few years I’ve often felt their new releases felt rushed. One gets the feeling they want to do too many things at the same time and the quality and originality suffers for it. Its still good, but not as good as their early releases (the Nassau are still their best work imho).

    • Hello Iannick. Well met Sir.

      I strongly suspect that I shall be signing up for the Wargames Website so I guess I’ll be seeing you there.

      I get the feeling that the Perry ranges do well just because they are Perry ranges. Good on the Perrys for getting themselves into that position but as the number of Perry Napoleonic armies blossom I find that I’m happy that my armies are a little different for not being from the Perrys.

      Now that the Perrys no longer have day jobs at Games Workshop it will be interesting to see if they pull off more of what they want to do.

      von Peter himself

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