Colonel Sir Henry Grabbe-Ghoulies has a bad day

von Peter himself finds himself a little perturbed again. The current employer of choice has informed him in no uncertain terms not to come back to work … at least not until after a Christmas & New Years break. Fortunately the current employer of choice has relayed this very same message to most of their employees so perhaps the current employer of choice has not yet found out about von Peter himself after all! Surely it can be but a matter of time?!  😳

The upside of all of this is that von Peter himself now has a couple of weeks away from paid employment. Hurrah! The seemingly much larger downside is that Fraulien von Peter herself may have many plans for unpaid employment over the same period. Sacré bleu! With this sad state of affairs in mind pleasant memories are desperately required. So let von Peter himself transport The dear reader back in time a couple of weeks to a small affair of arms in the Napoleonic Wars, the Peninsular War to be more precise.

Frenchmen for the day Ray and Michael had lured the British for the day von Peter himself and The son and heir to their lair for some historical investigations. Reality would be controlled by Sharp Practice from the the Too Fat Lardies with the scene set by The Compleat Fondler – a scenario book for Sharp Practice which narrates the adventures of Richard Sharp Fondler.

Compleat Fondler

In keeping with the Hollywood’ish daring do nature of Sharp Practice scenarios for the system tend to often include a ‘surprise’ or two so as to up the entertainment value. Unfortunately if von Peter himself were to relate all the ‘goings on’ that went on in the historic investigation of that day in 1812/1813 as hosted in Ray’s lair then he would potentially be ruining the future fun of any of The dear reader(s) that felt the urge to follow Fondler’s experiences via The Complete Fondler. Such a cost would weigh far too heavily on the conscience of von Peter himself and so a detailed blow by blow report of the game is not possible. Of course this unfortunate decision has absolutely nothing to do with the legendary idleness of your correspondent von Peter himself! Rather it is with a heavy heart that the richly deserved tellings of heroic – or otherwise – actions of the protagonists must necessarily be kept quiet.

This heroic or otherwise aspect was especially true as they relate to Colonel Sir Henry Grabbe-Ghoulies the upper class twit gentleman who has recently taken charge of Sharpe’s Fondler’s battalion. He speaks with a decided lisp, thinks that all sense of order has been lost to the army – but luckily he can fix that – and above all is determined to have the rifles off Sharpe’s Fondler’s men to be replaced with honest muskets. For some inexplicable reason von Peter himself was selected to play Sir Henry. The son & heir played as Richard Sharpe Fondler.

The unclassified elements of the scenario have the British needing to deliver a wagon of gold and powder to the Church of Madre de Deus for the notable guerrilla leader El Cascanueces while simultaneously rescuing the Marquesa de Una Paloma Blanca who is under the protection of the British agent Father O’Stereotype.

Colonel Sir Henry Grabbe-Ghoulies submits the following few words on the mostly unclassified aspects of the battle. Do not forget to click on the images for a larger and clearer view.

Fondler's Colonel 1

Fondler's Colonel 2

Fondler's Colonel 3

Fondler's Colonel 4

Notable events included the lead British Group – the one carrying the battalion colours -suffering a man drunk and two men leaving the ranks for a spot of looting. These were not scenario driven events but just the result of playing the rules. It seems that Colonel Sir Henry Grabbe-Ghoulies may have arrived just in time to reinstate some sort of order to the battalion! One of Sharpe’s Fondler’s green jackets also managed to drill a French Lieutenant between the eyes which caused the French some inconvenience as they did not have a Big Man of enough stature in place to control a larger formation

Many thanks to the dastardly Frenchmen for a day Ray and Michael for hosting a most enjoyable game and providing a fine lunchtime repast. The figures and scenery were care of Rays fine Peninsular collection and are certainly of the quality required for this here up market quality only the best will do blog!  😃

Oh and as for the result of the game … let us just say that Richard Sharpe Fondler has some revenge to to garner on behalf of the British Army.


The Army of the Kingdom of Westphalia 1807-1813

The History Book Man has been at it again releasing their latest e-book “The Army of the Kingdom of Westphalia 1807-1813″. Once again borrowed from the website …

This completely revised and updated volume was first published in 1979 and has been out of print since 1984. This new edition is illustrated with all new colour artwork and selected illustrations from authoritive artists.

The Kingdom of Westphalia was a totally new state created by Napoleon following the peace of Tilsit in 1807, and consisted of the previous states of Hanover, Brunswick and Hessen-Kassel. The throne was given to Napoleon’s favoured younger brother Jerome, who made his capital at Kassel. The formation of an army was one of the first actions of the new monarch, recruiting from the now unemployed soldiers of Kassel, Hanover and Brunswick. The army of Westphalia provided 25,000 troops to the Confederation of the Rhine who served in Napoleon’s campaigns in Spain, Russia and Germany. 283 pages.

The usual e-x-t-r-e-m-e-l-y difficult to beat value for money. von Peter himself will be adding this one to his reference materials.



Aurelian is now available

Aurelian is the latest from Sam Mustafa and his Honour series of games. From the website …

The Roman empire is fracturing. Plague stalks the land. The economy is collapsing. Emperors are assassinated with startling frequency. Barbarians have broken through the frontiers. The Persians have invaded in the east.

That Rome survived is largely due to one man.

Aurelian is a tabletop game about the Crisis of the Third Century. Players take the role of factions – both civilized and barbarian – contending for control of the fragmenting Roman Empire.

The game’s unit tiles and action cards are provided for free download.

For more information, sample chapters, and other supporting game materials, click here.

And for those of The dear readers who like to have a hard / paper copy of their rules then you’ll need to print it yourself as the rules will only be available as a pdf. Actually it will only be available as two pdf’s – one a printer friendly version and the other an all singing and dancing high resolution version with links for tablets etc. You’ll receive both for the price of USD $29.00 irrespective of where you live in the world.

For the reasoning behind the pdf only decision and more insights on Aurelian there is a podcast available which will provide nearly seventeen and a half minutes of such information.



And of course because it’s ‘that’ time of year … a very Merry Christmas to all The dear readers. 

And because there must be at least some doubt that von Peter himself will manage any further output prior to the New Year ticking over let’s play it safe … and a Happy New Year to The dear readers as well.

Until we meet again …

von Peter himself


9 thoughts on “Colonel Sir Henry Grabbe-Ghoulies has a bad day

  1. Wonderful reading yet again Peter. “Sharpe’s Practise” is certainly something which is on the radar for 2016 and your game may well have sealed the deal so to speak. I find as I get older I like to game, at the club at least, with fewer and fewer figures. The days of lugging boxes and boxes of lead and terrain up stairs has long since passed I’m afraid and so your AAR was very timely indeed. Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year and good luck on the “unpaid employment”.

    • Thank you Carlo

      The son & heir and mineself have enjoyed Sharp Practice. A much lees serious game … at least that’s how we play it. A few thoughts …
      – a decent scenario can make all the difference to the game. The occasional bit of shenanigans doesn’t hurt!
      – we just use our normal Napoleonic figures for playing with. We do have a few individually mounted “Big Men” and perhaps will add more but so far we have managed to work around it. For the game at Ray’s there were individual big men but the soldiers were based for traditional brigade/divisional(?) level games.
      – there is a second version of the rules on the way.

      And a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours.

      von Peter himself

    • Seasons salutations to you and yours too Kewwy. One always hopes that one can bring a modicum of joy to the weader. You are obviously a man of ware bweeding. I wonder if went to the same school?!

      von Peter himself … for Colonel Sir Henry Grabbe-Ghoulies

  2. While I personally prefer my Napoleonics games to be non-skirmish, Sharpes Practice games usually seem to be a lot of fun and yours seems to have been no exception. Great report vP and you certainly did not spoil anything!

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