I should be packing but … #1

von Peter himself is meant to be packing Schloss von Peter in preparation for the march to  Neu Schloss von Peter in a few weeks NOT creating new posts on his blog. So only a brief update this time around … and for goodness sake do not mention any of this lost packing time to Fraulien von Peter herself or else this may very well be the last post … ever!  💀

Russian Grenadier command base

von Peter himself is proud to unveil the command base for his brave Russian Grenadier Brigade. Aint got any painted grenadiers but got their command so that’s a start! Front Rank Figurines figures apart from the mounted grenadier officer – the one with the tall black plume – who is from the Wargames Foundry stable … and von Peter himself does not mean just the horse! Ha ha ha. Assorted coloured pigments applied by Greater Queeg with figure selection, choreography and basing by von Peter himself.

Napoleonic Russian grenadier command. Click to see a larger and clearer image.

We should attack in this direction with our brave grenadiers my General. By the way – where are our brave grenadiers? And why are we standing in a flower garden? It’s really not very manly!

This leaves one Russian command stand to complete from the latest intake of Russians – that of the planned Kuirassiere Brigade. von Peter himself hopes to work on it in little doses over the next few days. Stand by!

The Russian village gets a civic centre

Another building has rolled out of the Imperial Russian Village Fabrication Works. This time it is H4, Long House or Meeting House from Hovels.

H4 Meeting house

The finishing of the doors, shutters and decorative panel over each of the windows has generated considerable discussion between The son & heir and his better. The representative of the younger generation asserts that they should be painted in a gold (as they are on the Hovels website) or green or even gold and green. The position of von Peter himself is that …

  • where would a forgotten peasants village in the middle of nowhere get the resources to tart up the building?
  • a brief internet search showed a lot of plain unadorned wood buildings devoid of decoration
  • von Peter himself should really be preparing for the move from Schloss von Peter to Neu Schloss von Peter so lets just get it done for now and reconsider in the future
  • The yet to come church is where the oppressed locals will concentrate their finery … albeit a limited finery
  • those dastardly French have scraped off and stolen the gold – and even the green if any were there – paint and stolen it. This one is not so serious!  😃

As is evident from the graphic representations accompanying these words the opinions of von Peter himself have won through. Surprise! Disturbingly The son and heir has threatened to steal away the building and fancy up doors, shutters etc.  😲

H4 Meeting house

D’oh! von Peter really REALLY hates it when he photographs something and when reviewing the photos realises that the painting is not complete. Exhibit ‘A’ – the door handle thingy on the door may get some further attention … sometime.

This addition means that Russian village(s) can now be modelled with six buildings. von Peter himself is on a roll with them but the current thinking is that perhaps the last two will need to go on hold due to the aforementioned house move. Also there is the upcoming Waterloo game to prepare for and sadly the organisers are of a somewhat conservative outlook and representing Plancenoit with Russian styled buildings is most likely beyond them! 😃  Then again actually completing something does have a rather nice feel good feedback mechanism!

Napoleon 1813: Decision at Bautzen

James R. Arnold has authored several books that would be of interest to your average Napoleonic wargamer. His website NapoleonicBooks.com provides details which even includes publications of wargames scenarios.

His latest book Napoleon 1813: Decision at Bautzen hits the sweet spot for von Peter himself – Central Europe in 1813. From the website ..

Napoleon 1813 describes and explains Napoleon’s efforts to recover from the catastrophe of 1812. It dismisses many conventional myths regarding the spring campaign of 1813. Throughout the story of the tumultuous spring days, Napoleon 1813 gives voice to the soldiers who participated in a campaign that proved Napoleon’s last, best chance to preserve his dynasty.

480 pages, 37 maps, and 71 illustrations.

More details are available on the website.

One for the collection is the thinking locally.

Napoleon 1813 - Decision at Bautzen

 

And now it’s back to the house moving preparations.

The usual reminder – don’t be forgetting to click on the images for larger and clearer views.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Oh no, not more figure comparisons! Perry visitation and a new blog

Cossack and Hussar outpost

The Perry twins are, or at least were, back in Wellington on one of their pilgrimages. But they do keep themselves busy with the local film in-crowd of Peter Jackson, Weta Workshop etc. They even managed a spot of acting during some Hobbit filming. Apparently they played a couple of humans … which just goes to show how far prosthetics have come if they can make the Perry twins look human! Ha ha ha. von Peter himself was overly proud of this rather clever quip. The twins smiled politely and drunk their beer!  8O)

Despite their busy schedule the twins found time for a couple of meetings with some of the gaming locals. von Peter himself and The son & heir went along on the Friday night of the 5th July. Much enjoyment and anecdotes were shared along with several beers in the noisy environment of the Mac’s Brewbar on the Wellington waterfront. Not a lot of the future for Perry Miniatures was gleaned despite several cunning and frankly underhand attempts to divine such! And what was divined would probably be a betrayal of trust for von Peter himself to splurge here. Sorry.

But von Peter himself did have the presence of mind to ask about the comparative figure sizes of their first and last Napoleonic sculpts for Wargames Foundry. And yes, as postulated in the prior An illustrated comparison of Napoleonic Russians – Front Rank vs. Foundry post, the figure size did increase from the start of their Napoleonic sculpting (Austrians, Bavarians and French) for Wargames Foundry to the end (Russians).

So a couple more illustrative pictures of Napoleonic figures from Wargames Foundry (early sculpt and late), Front Rank Figurines and Perry Miniatures. As usual a few disclaimers first.

  1. The figures are, with the exception of one undercoated by someone Austrian grenadier, as they come from the manufacturer. Usually von Peter himself would ink or wash the figures prior to photography to enhance the definition of the figures. But in this case von Peter himself was just too idle and the point is not the fineness of the sculpting but the size of the sculpting.
  2. The Wargames Foundry Russian samples are taken from the unused remnants of the RN43 Musketeer/Jager in Greatcoat Marching pack. It was with some surprise, some delight and because of the context some annoyance that von Peter himself discovered that one of the surviving / unused figures from that pack is shorter than the others! And shorty was used in both pictures below. Damnation. For the record the other unused figures from the pack are all of the taller stature.
  3. The Perry Miniatures Russians are represented by standing figures from their RN16 Two horse apothecary wagon with wounded and surgeons and orderlies (militia and non-combatants) pack. I have no ‘fighting’ Russian infantry from the Perrys so hopefully these are representative of the Perrys size wise.
  4. Likewise von Peter himself has limited figures to choose from as representatives of the early sculpted Napoleonics from Foundry. Most of what he does have are casualties which are lying or sitting down and so not that useful for our purposes. von Peter himself does also have a solitary early sculpt Frenchman … somewhere!!! But the little critter is eluding all attempts to discover his where-abouts. Undoubtedly he’ll turn up tomorrow. <Grrrrr>

With all that said typed … on with the show …

Perry, Front Rank and Foundry Napoleonic Russian foot figures

First up are Russian infantry from the three companies. Please pay close attention to the photograph above. From left to right are presented …

  1. Perry Miniatures from RN16 Two horse apothecary wagon with wounded and surgeons and orderlies (militia and non-combatants)
  2. Front Rank Figurines RN43 Musketeer/Jager in Greatcoat Marching
  3. Foundry Miniatures from pack RN1/4 Pavlov Grenadiers in Winter Dress Marching
  4. Foundry Miniatures from pack RN2/3 Infantry, Oilskin Covered 1812 Shako Marching. This figure is the aforementioned shorty from the pack
  5. (Both joined figures) Perry Miniatures from RN16 Two horse apothecary wagon with wounded and surgeons and orderlies (militia and non-combatants)
  6. Foundry Miniatures from pack RN1/4 Pavlov Grenadiers in Winter Dress Marching
  7. Perry Miniatures from RN16 Two horse apothecary wagon with wounded and surgeons and orderlies (militia and non-combatants)
  8. Foundry Miniatures from pack RN2/3 Infantry, Oilskin Covered 1812 Shako Marching
  9. Front Rank Figurines RN3 Musketeer/Jager Marching

The most surprising revelation is the difference between the Foundry generic Russian infantry and the Pavlov Grenadier figures. Perhaps it’s just that the Pavlovs only selected big strapping lads!

Early vs later Napoleonic sculpts by the Perry's for Foundry

Next up are early sculpted (Austrians) vs late sculpted (Russians) Perry handiwork for Foundry Miniatures.

  1. RN2/3 Infantry, Oilskin Covered 1812 Shako Marching. This is the shorter figure from the pack
  2. Austrian Grenadier from an unknown pack – von Peter suspects that he was from an Austrian captives pack
  3. RN1/4 Pavlov Grenadiers in Winter Dress Marching
  4. AN72 Austrian Hussars Mounting Up
  5. RN2/3 Infantry, Oilskin Covered 1812 Shako Marching
  6. AN72 Austrian Hussars Mounting Up
  7. AN72 Austrian Hussars Mounting Up
  8. RN2/3 Infantry, Oilskin Covered 1812 Shako Marching

The short figure Russian infantryman on the far left queers the pitch a little and that Pavlov is still a standout but one can make ones own decision on the differing sizes of the earlier and later sculpts.

And here endeth the ongoing saga of figure size differences. In truth it should have started and finished in the prior post. I blame it all on those Perry twins!!  8O)

Carl Pagano starts a blog

With Pyjamas through the Desert

von Peter himself received an email from an old acquaintance Carl Pagano. Now as a point of clarification it is not that Carl is overly old of himself. It’s just that Carlo and von Peter himself made their first acquaintance many years ago. Carlo had an envious reputation as a man with a seriously fine Napoleonic collection. And if von Peter himself remembers correctly a loving wife who would buy him wargames units as presents all of her own volition. Now where is that Fraulien von Peter herself  – I have here something that she needs to read … preferably while von Peter himself is out of harms way!!  8O)

Anyway Carl has started a blog http://withpyjamasthroughthedessert.blogspot.com.au/ which in his own words …

This particular blog will join a host of other wonderful sites which pay homage to the Gilder Games in the Sudan.  We have spent many years playing the rules and recently I have spent a good deal of time putting it all on paper, taking out some of the ambuguities, inserting explanations and examples so that the rules can finally be available in a wargamer friendly format that hopefully will get more people playing this wonderful period with 60 man battalions and hordes of Fuzzies coming over the hill intent on carnage!  Fantastic stuff.

So if you’re into the Sudan, Peter Gilder’s rules for the Sudan, some great pictures of games based in the Sudan or just an interesting read then von Peter himself suggests that you should make the electronic move over to With Pyjamas through the Desert with haste and promptly book mark the site!

Enough said.

The heading picture – Cossack and Hussar Outpost – was found in the dusty archives of von Peter himself. Now that cossack obviously has his horse well under control. Either that or he is a very rash or brave cossack indeed!

And don’t forget to click on the images for an enhanced view.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

An illustrated comparison of Napoleonic Russians – Front Rank vs. Foundry

In the immediately prior post Somewhere in Saxony, 1813 – Russians under review von Peter himself puffed out his chest and proudly displayed his Napoleonic Russians for the world to see. The world was – of course! – not satisfied and the comment was received from Burkhard of dhcwargamesblog notoriety…

Do you have some close ups of the mixed Foundry / Front Rank standard bearer bases. I am already thinking about adding some Front Rank to the Foundry / Perry / Warlord lead and plastic pile!

Sure can. In fact in a fit of excessive – and highly unusual – generosity von Peter himself undertook to show several comparison photographs of Front Rank vs. Foundry Napoleonic Russian figures. You never know – they may be useful to someone.  8O)

Firstly a little bit of history – at least as von Peter himself sees it. A Perry twin or two sculpted the Foundry Napoleonic Russians. The Russians were the last range – or at least the last Napoleonic range – that was sculpted for Foundry by Perry hands. Somewhere during the time that the Perry(s?) were sculpting the Foundry Napoleonic ranges Foundry moved from producing 25mm figures to 28mm figures. As a result the earlier released Foundry Napoleonic Austrians, Bavarians & French are noticeably smaller than the later released Russians. As such the Foundry Napoleonic Russians are a fairly good match with the Front Rank Russians but this is not the case – at least in the opinion of von Peter himself – with the two companies Austrians, Bavarians and French.

And just to confuse the issue the proceeding applies to the Infantry figures only. The Foundry mounted figures are noticeably smaller than their Front Rank equivalents. It would be interesting to know if the Foundry Mounted Russians are the same size as their mounted Austrians, Bavarians and French.

Anyway on with whole point of this post – a few illustrative pictures of Foundry vs. Front  Rank Russian Napoleonic figures …

Grenadiers front

Grenadiers rearAbove are two photographs of two bases of Russian grenadiers. In both photos the base on the left contains Foundry figures and that on the right has Front Rank figures.

Standard bearers front

Standard bearers rearThe above two photos attempt to show a comparison between Foundry and Front Rank standard bearers. The problem is getting a good look at the standard bearers who are hiding under flags and behind their protective companions!

Foundry actually have quite a selection of standard bearers whereas the choice from Front Rank is much more limited. The catch is that you need to buy a complete command pack to get often only one standard bearer from Foundry. Front Rank standard bearers can be purchased singly … as can all their figures.

The Front Rank standard bearer is has the honour of holding the white flag. All the other figures are Foundry products.

Mounted front

Mounted rear

And the final two pictures are mainly to illustrate to the readership the size discrepancy between the Front Rank & Foundry mounted figures. This discrepancy holds true for the (mounted!) cavalry figures.

von Peter himself must admit to being a little surprised at the difference in size between the two companies infantry models as seen in these photographs. He has not noted such a difference on the table top.

This has been a public service announcement proudly brought to you by von Peter himself.

And finally apologies to Burkhard. von Peter himself is quite sure that Bukhard did not mean for a whole post to be given over to his simple petition. Consider it an early birthday AND Christmas present Burkhard.  8O)

Secondly apologies for the delayed response for which von Peter himself will happily share the blame with Mother Nature and a little bit of a storm she threw at the Wellington Region of New Zealand. Although Schloss von Peter and associated estate came through unscathed the surrounding area was a bit of a bomb site with many large trees either broken or uprooted … and many of them falling through the power lines. Damnation!  Schloss von Peter was without electricity from the night of Thursday the 20th June through to the late afternoon of the following Tuesday. Thankfully the wood fire was especially selected because it can be cooked upon and our water is gravity fed so no need for pumps that need electricity to work. Still being without power gets real tedious real quick.

And a third apology to all. Choosing to photograph the figures in front of the very light coloured church was a typically sub optimum von Peter himself command choice as it played havoc with the lighting and photography. At least that’s what von Peter himself thinks happened!!  8O))

Oh, and as ever click on any photograph to see an enlarged version.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself 

A temporary ‘little low’

von Peter himself has suffered an inspired period of gaming productivity since his last post. Hmmm, not a good start as it is not really that true. If only it were. One should at least aim for a modicum of truthfulness if one has pretensions of being an international blogger. Bad bad von Peter!!  Let’s start over shall we?  8O)

Lights … camera … take 2 … ACTION …

The three weeks since the last post have not been that productive and in truth the wargaming juices have been at a somewhat low ebb for von Peter himself. If pressed for a reason he would probably shrug his shoulders and mutter indiscernible mutterings under his breath. Perhaps the thought of the incoming winter is to blame though its usual precursors have been very slow to make their appearance this year. As a related event New Zealand Daylight Saving Time came to an end which is always a little disruptive. Winter really is on its way even if we have got no where near to lighting the fire yet. There’s always the dog to blame as well!  8O)

ECW Covenanter infantry commander2

The time has not been a total waste though. A further two English Civil War Covenanter command bases have been welcomed into the rebased Covenanter Armee – one for the infantry (above) and the other for the cavalry (below). von Peter himself got a little excited when completing the basing on these and broke open his pack of yellow flowers. Such wild exuberance!

Unfortunately the lighting is not that great for the dismounted figure on the infantry command stand. In reality his facial complexion matches that of the mounted figure. Honest.

The understanding of von Peter himself is that most of his purchased ECW Covenanter army are Foundry Miniatures figures … but not all. The figures on the cavalry command stand do not look that Foundry’ish to von Peter himself.

ECW Covenanter cavalry commander1

Four Calpe Miniatures French voltigeurs are slowly plodding onward as well. Four doesn’t sound like many – mostly because it’s not – but they do constitute both a stand and a company for von Peter’s French. The guilty secret is that every now and then von Peter himself sneeks a company of French into the painting queue as a breath of fresh air. This is the third occasion and half a battalion of Route March French will have been completed on the sly when this stand is done.

This meagre output is positively stellar however when compared to The son & heir’s though <snigger snigger>. Of course he has been busy with schooling … and the XBox and Facebook <gag> … but it is nearly the end of term and some inducement/bribe may need to be forthcoming to get him to finish his Italianised version of Martin Kelly’s Befreiungskriege 1813-14 Limited Edition Figures over the school holiday.

And there was a game at Terry’s. A five player Black Powder game which was notable in that one side was completely manned by Austrians – a first for von Peter himself in a game this large. The son & heir concurrently savoured the highs and lows as the defender of a two section village. A Bavarian light battalion held out turn after turn despite growing odds whereas a Bavarian line battalion gave it away at the first opportunity. A double ‘1’ followed by another double ‘1’ will do that I guess. His big regret however was that he had kept the beloved Saxon battalions of von Peter himself in reserve and didn’t manage to get them mangled! There’s gratitude for you!!

Wargames Soldiers & Strategy spotted in New Zealand – the verdict

As a follow up to the last post von Peter himself is happy to report that he very much enjoyed reading the issue of Wargames Soldiers & Strategy (WS&S) that he spotted in a local purveyor of magazines. At this point in time – because in von Peter’s experience these things have a tendency to change over time – von Peter himself would rate this as his preferred read over Wargames Illustrated, the old/current Miniature Wargames and the old/current Battlegames.

‘Old/current’ is used above because Miniature Wargames is about to be revamped and merged with Battlegames to become ‘Miniature Wargames with Battlegames’ complete with a revamped look under the editorialship of Henry Hyde of Battlegames fame. Where this merged and revised entity will sit in the von Peter himself magazine hierarchy remains to be seen but the first issue is on order from Caliver Books.

For now von Peter himself has confirmed that WS&S is available as a regular release down here in NZ so he will be hunting it down on a regular basis.

Don’t forget to click on the images for larger and much improved versions of the image.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself 

A blast from the past

Way back on the 5th June 2009 von Peter himself and The son & heir were in the middle of their great overseas adventure. And the particular adventure of that particular day was to visit Foundry Miniatures in Nottingham on the occasion of the release of their Napoleon rules.

Flip the calendar forward to almost the current day and Terry decides to renew his Wargames Illustrated subscription. As part of his renewal he catches up on the last five or so issues that he has missed. And today he scans through issue number 295 over his lunch. And what does he see but the photo and caption as presented up above as part of a Foundry advertisement.

As Terry so delicately put it in his email …

recognise the wee snotling with the Ginger hair then?

Yes, it’s none other than a younger and much shorter version of that man of international mystery, intrigue and not inconsiderable expense – The son & heir. It’s quite astounding to see how much he has changed over the intervening three and a bit years.

As for the experience of that day so long ago. Well the father and the son had a most successful outing. We played a game of Napoleon hosted by the author on the official launch day so that was something a little out of the ordinary. And though the rules have taken a bit of a kicking in various forums we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. The chaps at Foundry proved to be great hosts and we got to wander amongst the rows of Foundry products and even made a purchase or two. By the time we made it back to home base in Bristol later that day we were knackered but content. A great day out.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Scots Covenanters rebase commences

Several decades ago* a deal was struck between Paul Stairs and von Peter himself. Money went one way and a Scots Covenanter army from the English Civil War (ECW) period went the other. At the time the plan was that the Covenanters would be used to fight Pauls remaining ECW armies using the soon to be published Anchor of Faith – Piquet’s Pike & Shot (1600 – 1690) supplement. Time moved on, lives changed, Paul sold his remaining ECW armies … and then Anchor of Faith was eventually published! To be honest the order of these occurrences could have been a little better!

* von Peter himself does not (totally) exaggerate here. Some of you readers would not have existed at the time of the cash for soldiers transaction. The son & heir would be an excellent example as the Covenanters came into the life of von Peter himself several years before The son & heir was to intrude.

Sadly the Covenanters were destined for years of quiet existence in their boxes barracks under the gaming table. There was to be only an occasional glimpse of light as they were either shown to nosey individuals or paraded on the gaming table to be shot … with a camera. Ha ha ha.

The army itself is composed mostly of Foundry figures – at least that is the understanding of von Peter himself – and has been through the hands of several gamers prior to its current overlordship. Rumour has it that one of those sets of hands were those attached to Tony Ashcroft who as NZWM was to master – and for a while manufacture – mostly WWII vehicles.

Paul had lovingly touched up the figures and based them for the second edition WRG Renaissance rules. Locally these were commonly referred to as the Gush rules because they were authored by a George Gush. Pikemen were each on a 15mm frontage, musketeers and heavy cavalry on 20mm and so on. Additionally the figures were based in various denominations – mostly as ones or twos – so that individual figures could be removed as they were shot, stabbed or slashed.

Some of the Covenanters as transferred from Paul to von Peter himself.
That basing is all going to change … eventually <gulp!>

Ever since coming under the loving overlordship of von Peter himself the army has faced the dreaded prospect of being rebased. von Peter himself is much more into scenic element basing and the skimpy one or two figures per base was never going to do. After much on again / off again discussion over literally years a decision was finally – and surprisingly – reached on how us gallant few would base our ECW armies. Many were the issues to consider …

  • how closely packed did we want the figures bearing in mind that figures come in all sizes even if they are meant to be the same size
  • how big did we want the units to be. Big units look great but would we ever get a reasonable number of units together if they were on the larger side individually?
  • overhangs of figures past the edge of the base were to be a no no. Pikes were to be the exception here as some pre existing armies <cough cough> already had pikes at an angle

The final consensus was for bases of 60*60mm – the same as for our ancients. How many figures go on the base is up to the bases creator. We have plumped for smaller units than some but we will be able to play bigger battles if we so desire. And if we really want to we can amalgamate units together to create meatier versions.

And so the first infantry unit has been created as a proof of concept. For some reason the only red coated infantry unit was chosen as opposed to all the blue and grey ones. No touching up of the figures has yet been actioned which speaks volumes for the army that marched into the service of von Peter himself all those years ago.

Now von Peter himself really must get back to some of those Napoleonics that have been sitting mostly complete on the painting table – or that portion of the painting left available after the squatting of The son & heir. <mutter mutter>

Don’t forget to click on the pictures for a closer view

Fire and brimstone … and the slaughter of the opposition in a multitude of messy ways … are the preachings of the day from the regimental pastor

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself