Valleyboy’s lament

Possibly because The family does not get up there very often The family still retains some friendships around the Tauranga area of New Zealand. With The son & heir due back at Neu Schloss von Peter for one of the seemingly incessant holiday breaks to his tertiary education the decision was taken to lumber him with responsibility for the dog and the house and flee to the supposedly sunny north** – in this case meaning Tauranga and surrounds – for a few days rest & relaxation. The question to be answered – could the friendships survive actual face to face meetings?  😇

** ‘supposedly’ because the weather in the home base of Wellington was better than that in Tauranga and surrounds during the visitation. Typical!

Many thanks to those who put us up by providing accomodation … or just put up with us! But those poor souls are of no interest to The dear readers here on a wargaming blog. We will be focussing on the re-aquaintence with one Kerry T – aka Valleyboy – and also Anthony M.

In which von Peter himself gets educated, well provisioned and generally spoilt at Valleyboys ranch

Some history: von Peter himself had made Kerry’s and Anthony’s acquaintance over the internet on some forum or other. Some years ago the North Island Wargames Convention was held in Tauranga. The Republic to Empire Napoleonic rules had not long been out and Kerry and Anthony – both living in/around Tauranga – were going to be hosting a two day game utilising said rules at said convention. Craig and von Peter himself travelled up from Wellington to take part in the game. Friendships were formed.

Kerry and his better half Nicki have built themselves a swanky home on a lifestyle block near Tauranga. Designed as a four bedroom house it is in actuality a three bedroom plus wargaming room house. Brilliant! It was to this room that von Peter himself was invited for a game come lesson of General d’Armee using a small portion of the in-house 15mm armies. Kerry favoured his guest by deploying a Prussian army for him to use while Kerry fielded French. The Prussian army was larger but contained some landwehr rated as recruits. In contrast the French fielded a smaller force but contained more veteran / elite units. Unfortunately we had to abandon the game with quite a bit of play still in it because dinner guests arrived. But von Peter himself enjoyed the game and Kerry had managed to impart quite a lot of information re the rules. Some images with accompanying commentary from the game …

Above: the table with the troops deployed. Brave freedom fighting later Napoleonic Prussians to the left. To the right are the troops of the would be continuing oppressors – the French. Note the reflection of the photographer in the large central picture on the back wall. Artistry at its finest!

Above: a couple of moves into the game. In the foreground the Prussian cavalry brigade of a kuirrassiere and a dragoon regiment are trying to get the jump on the hopefully outmatched French light cavalry brigade of a hussar and a chasseur a cheval regiment. The French have spotted this ploy and have activated their reserve heavy cavalry brigade of two cuirassier regiments which have made alarming progress to the scene thanks to the cunning use of ADCs to spur their forward march.

Above: a few turns in on the Prussian left. The Prussian battery deployed next to the hill in the distance have been distracted from causing pain and suffering on their opposites by the posturing of a French light cavalry brigade. Battalions have been rushed to shore up the artillery’s position and the reserve brigade of one uhlan regiment and one horse battery – to the left of the image – have been despatched in their general direction.

In the end the French cavalry felt it had to charge the guns in a now or never move. An interesting touch and go situation spiced up with a generous helpings of canister and supporting infantry fire had the cavalry failing to charge home. A pass for the rules. As an amusing finale to this action we then realised that the cavalry brigade was “Hesitant” and therefore the cavalry charge could not have taken place! Mine ever gracious host Kerry pronounced that the result should stand as a monument to some steadfast military actions from both sides.

Above: the scene on the Prussian right at the same time as the previous image. By one of those gruesome military coincidences the artillery of both sides lined up opposite one another … and then proceeded to target each other in a most sanguine manner. All very pleasing to the infantry in the area one imagines!  😃

Above: the centre of the battle lines. From the Prussian perspective the damaged building – damned French vandalism! – separates a brigade of four recruit classed landwehr battalions to the left and a regular brigade to the right. von Peter’s original cunning plan was to hold the landwehr back a little but during the course of the battle an opportunity seemed to arise where the brigade might be able to gang up on a single French battalion deployed in line. Nothing ventured nothing gained and in the interests of giving the rules a decent run through the landwehr were duly launched in the general direction of the French battalion. The canny Marshal Kerry divined the Prussian plan and prepared to launch a spoiling attack on the landwehr with some of his infantry. This image shows the situation before the action ‘went down’. The French battalion with the blue ‘1’ die behind it charged the landwehr battalion to it’s front. The landwehr’s musketry failed to halt the Frenchmen and they were pushed back taking the (rear) supporting landwehr battalion with them. This left just one landwehr battalion – with another in support – to charge the French battalion in line. You can just see the lead landwehr battalion besides the command stand on the left of the image. Sadly this depleted force proved insufficient to move the Frenchmen.

FYI the little numbers on display keyed the units to a printed order of battle which greatly aided any players … cough  cough von Peter himself … who may not have been familiar with the model army they commanded.

Above: The Prussian Silesian Cuirassier – Prussian unit of the day. They spent much of the game involved in charges, counter charges or melees. They saw off two light cavalry regiments and a French cuirassier regiment and were still in play – if a little battered – when the game was called. And all this despite von Peter himself playing them as regulars rather than the veterans they should have been for most of the game! D’oh!! The supporting dragoons in their brigade could only sit back and applaud!

Not that luck has much to do with it but Kerry is a truly lucky wargamer to have his dedicated wargames room. Included in the room is a cunningly designed wargames table that shrinks & expands as required and provides copious storage for armies and terrain. Also included is a glass display case for the flaunting of a small portion of Kerry’s impressive painting output. The images below hopefully give a flavour of the mighty fine toys historic replicas currently on display. More and better – d’oh! – images on Kerrys blog.

Above: an overview of the display case

Above: Seven Years War Prussians. What a sensible man that Kerry is!  😃

Above: a shelf of Napoleonic Poles underneath a shelf of Napoleonic French

von Peter himself mentioned the post game dinner for a reason. It was wonderful. Mrs Valleyboy – Nicki – produced a gourmet meal that was consumed with great enthusiasm by all present … as was the fine wine selection!  🥂  All present included the additional dinner guests Fraulien von Peter herself, Anthony from that first game all those years ago and his wife Karen. A great evening that has left the residents of Neu Schloss von Peter well and truly indebted.

Die Kriegskunst 2

“Die what?” I hear the less well travelled Dear reader exclaim. Die Kriegskunst are a set of rules based on the General de Brigade rules for gaming the (European hosted?) battles of the Seven Years War.

It appears that there is to be a Seven Years War version of General d’Armee by the author of  Die Kriegskunst – Angus Konstam.

From the beginnings of a game report

This week we were off to High Germany, for our first proper playtest of Die Kriegskunst 2, or Son of Kriegskunst, or whatever we’re going to call it. Essentially the rules are a modified version of Dave Brown’s General d’Armee, with a lot of the original Die Kriegskunst thrown into the pot.

The SYW figures of von Peter himself have lain dormant for a while now. Hmmm! Play testing is expected to run “well into next year”.

 

Perry Napoleonic Swedes

From the latest Perry Miniatures newsletter …

Alan has started work on the Swedish Napoleonic Army and these are the first greens.  He is concentrating on the 1808-9 period first but will cover earlier and later uniforms too.

From the viewpoint of von Peter himself the later uniforms sound like the favoured 1813  period will be covered for anyone who would like to raise some of Bernadotte’s Swedes for the Allied Army of the North. Not that Bernadotte ever really put them in harms way as he played his own longer game in 1813.

 

Garage Gaming Terry’s Wagram II update

The one time Archduke Charles has posted another missive on the Wagram II game imaginatively entitled Wagram 1809 – Part 2.

 

A Clash of Eagles

As to that Garage Gaming Terry – von Peter himself has within the last hour or two exchanged military goods with him. From von Peter himself to Garage Gaming Terry went a set each of Austrian and Russian dice from Dice of War. Coming back the other way was a copy of the recently released A Clash of Eagles from Warlord Games. The latter is the Black Powder supplement covering the 1812 campaign in Russian. Some of the The dear readers may have a passing familiarity with that campaign!  😃

I’s a reasonably hefty publication coming in at 200 pages. A quick flick reveals …

  • an overview off the campaign
  • overviews of the armies involved including many of the French ‘allies’ that provided components to the Grand Army
  • some new rules for Black Powder
  • six scenarios and ideas for pick-up games
  • army lists
  • Appendix 1: An overview ofNapoleonic warfare
  • Appendix 2: Bibliography
  • lots of wargames porn – pictures of gaming figures and units.

The author is Adrian McWalter. von Peter himself believes that the is is very same Adrian McWalter who authored the Napoleonic rule set Over the Hills and the Napoleonic skirmish rule set Forager. A man of many talents and activities our Adrian!  😃

von Peter himself looks forward to disagreeing with some of the content re nationality and unit ratings etc. von Peter himself always does find something to disagree with and this keeps him most happy and content!!  😇

Enough.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

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