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

Advertisements

Snippets #4

Wagram II … it’s nearly time

The second coming of the Wagram game is on this coming weekend – 5 & 6 August 2017 – at the Call to Arms convention in Wellington, New Zealand. This iteration will be played over two days with an expanded battlefield / tabletop, a few more players, a few more troops and a few tweaks to the game itself. von Peter himself is expecting a more torrid time than the cake walk the French gave him in the first game. Sob!

Since the first Wagram game von Peter’s Austrian forces have been busily recruiting and have welcomed …

  • a second grenadier battalion
  • a command stand for the grenadiers
  • a couple of ADCs.

With the probable exception of the ADCs the rest will have their introduction to simulated warfare in the upcoming Wagram game. Here’s hoping that they manage to avoid the anecdotal fate of all new units in their first game, i.e. to flee in disgrace at the first opportunity! The potential for a shameful display is definitely there but it is thankfully offset by the the all important and redeeming feature that they will not be under the command of von Peter himself! 😃

Pictures of the newly pigmented figures in a later post when some photos are taken.

 

Foreign Regiments in French Service Volume 5: The Polish Legions 1798-1814

The History Book Man have released their latest e-book “Foreign Regiments in French Service Volume 5: The Polish Legions 1798-1814”. The blurb …

THE POLISH LEGIONS 1798-1814 Was originally published in 1974 and was on of the earlier r titles in the ‘Armies and Uniforms’ series of books written by W. J. Rawkins. This new E-book edition has been substantially revised and updated with a wealth of new material which was not available or was incomplete in when originally released. The original black and white line drawings have been replaced with new illustrations in full colour and the volume now contains many illustrations from contemporary or authoritive sources.
235pp

The Dear reader may be aware that von Peter himself is a huge fan of The History Book Man’s e-books. Still £3.99 and still an e-book bargain.

 

General de Brigade scenario Book #7

This new scenario book arrived reasonably promptly. It’s full colour on glossy paper and though von Peter himself has only had a quick skim read the scenarios themselves seem to be of interest.

Unfortunately the skim read quickly betrayed the fact that the book was written in Italy – by the good folks of the Milan Wargames Club. Of course this of itself is not a bad thing but what is a bad thing is not having the English version properly edited. The text at times betrays its non English origins and the maps have not been translated from Italian to English at all.

None of this means that the scenarios will not provide good games but it is a shame. And none of this means that von Peter himself wont pore over the contents of the book … but it is a shame.

 

Prussian dice

What’s life without a little frivolity? Dice of War make a range of … surprise … dice such that one can have dice to match one’s army. They do this by making the dice in a colour suitable for the army and by replacing the spots on the ‘6’ face with a graphic appropriate to the army. von Peter himself has started an assault on the Napoleonic Dice range. All of a sudden it seems to be a fantastic idea to have matching dice for each of the armies collected.

The Austrian dice were to be the first purchased for use in the Wagram games but agents of the cursed French have obviously infiltrated the supply chain and these were out of stock … as fyi are the Russian dice. D’oh!  A fall back nation was required for the first ‘trial’ purchase. Obviously it had to be the Prussian dice but this was not so straight forward. Two varieties of Prussian dice are on offer. One has an iron cross shape and the other a Prussian Eagle. von Peter himself chose the cross as it is more immediately obvious as to the nation – ok, it could be generic German dice but lets not get too picky! – and several other nations have a variety of eagles so staying away from an eagle seemed like a good idea.

The dice have appeared and where I was expecting 10 dice 12 arrived which is a little bonus …

A second order has been placed for a couple of sets of French Dice – one for von Peter himself and one for Garage Gaming Terry – and a set of the newly released Saxon Dice. Once again the French Dice come in two varieties – one with a ‘N’ surrounded by a laurel wreath and one with a French Eagle. We are getting the ‘N’ dice.

Time will tell how long this fascination with army specific dice will run. von Peter himself has Austrian, Russian and Bavarian armies as yet without their own dice plus an unpigmented and likewise diceless Polish army. von Peter himself can sense their quartermasters raising requisitions for dice to call their own.  Ah … the luxury of frivolity!  😎

The Great Wargaming Survey 2017

It’s that time of the year again. The good folks at Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy magazine magazine are after the holy grail of what makes wargaming and wargamers tick. And their tool of choice –  The Great Wargaming Survey 2017.  Apparently …

filling out the entire survey shouldn’t take more than 5-10 minutes, and we’re taking responses until August 19th, 2017

… and …

As before, and thanks to our gracious sponsors, we have quite a few prizes to be won. Leave your email address at the end of the survey to be entered into the raffle. Entering the contest does not automatically mean we’ll subscribe you to any communication. That is a separate question which does not influence the raffle in any way.

..and even better …

As a thank-you for taking part, everyone who completes the survey will get a €5 gift code for the Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy / Karwansaray Publishers webshop. Though it does not apply to shipping costs, this code can be used for any (combination of) item(s) in the shop apart from our Premium and Digital subscriptions.

Really you’ve not got much to loose … apart from 5 – 10 minutes of painting time.  😃

 

But for now von Peter himself must leave The dear readers and prepare to don his best Austrian general’s uniform in preparation for the weekend’s Wagram game. There is a real concern that all the feasting celebrating the successes of the last Wagram game may have resulted in a little judicious letting out of the uniform being required!  😇

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Wagram

Perhaps The dear reader has heard of the Battle of WagramGarage Gaming Terry has and it has long been his dream to refight the battle with massed gaming pieces shaped and pigmented so as to present themselves as replicas of the men of that era.

For the less learned of the readership the Battle of Wagram was fought between Napoleon’s French and Allied Army and the Austrians under Archduke Charles over the two days of 5 & 6 July, 1809. On the second day of the battle fearing the deteriorating situation the Austrians withdrew their army.

To counteract the French (slight) superiority in numbers, their advantage in command and control and slight advantage in the quality of their units (on average) Garage Gaming Terry had devised some evil schemes to make the game a little more interesting. Chief amongst these was the probability that in the refight Archduke John would put in an appearance with some(?) of his troops to give that French Emperor another element in the battle to process and deal with. Likewise elements of the Austrian V Corps were likely to arrive in contradiction to the occurrences back in 1809.

Somewhere along the line one of the Garage Gamers – Paul W – announced that he would make custom terrain for the battle. This was of course quite crazy. The sheer size of the table, the long hours of thankless work, the cost of the materials, the storage and the transportation. The man’s obviously a certifiable lunatic but as the pictures show he delivered. A first for von Peter himself – playing on custom built terrain for the battle. Luxury.

Above: Paul W’s custom built terrain prior to being sullied by the presence of the two armies. Photo care of John H.

Once again von Peter himself was summoned forth to don the white and red – and black and gold and green plume and … … … – of an Austrian general’s uniform. GdK Freidrich Hohenzollern commander of the II Army Corps was the part to be played. Closer inspection of his command revealed …

  • an Advanced Guard Brigade lead by Siegenthal of
    • 8th Jäger battalion (which was promptly substituted with a battalion of Grenzer as von Peter himself has pigmented Grenzer but his jagers remain unpigmented)
    • a battalion of Archduke Charles Legion (Landwehr)
    • Vincent Chevaulagers (which were promptly substituted for by von Peter’s Hessen-Homburg Hussars)
  • an Infantry Division lead by FML Thomas Brady
    • 5 large line battalions
    • 2 landwehr battalions
    • 2 batteries
  • an Infantry Division lead by FML Josef Ulm
    • 5 large line battalions
    • 1 landwehr battalion
    • 2 batteries

Hohenzollern’s job – hold the escarpment behind the Russbach Stream and associated swampiness from the town of Wagram on the right flank to just past the village of Baumersdorf on the left flank where a junction was made with the Rosenberg’s IV Army Corps who were holding the village of Markgrafneusiedl against Davout. Ominously Oudinot’s troops could be seen across the stream opposite II Corps.

Scenes from before the storm

Some images taken just prior to the first shots being fired. The sharp eyed may notice the occasional Prussian battery or battalion. The needs of the game were vast and the local resources not quite up to those needs despite some valiant efforts with paint brushes.

Above: the join between the right wing of Rosenburg’s IV Corps – Paul G –  and Hohenzollerns’s II Corps – von Peter himself. As is his way von Peter himself has managed to deploy his troops and left a battery out of the line. That will be his pudgy hand rearranging the troops to make room for the second base to complete the battery. The one base battery – soon to be two! – marks the left most unit of the II Corps. Oudinots French in the distance. The building on the left is the tower on the outskirts of Markgrafneusiedl. The buildings by the pudgy hand represent the village of Baumersdorf. This was initially garrisoned by a battalion of Archduke Charles Legion (Landwehr) from the Advanced Guard. Photo care of John H.

Above: Perhaps more of Oudinot’s French – who can tell … they all look the same! 😇 Whatever their fit in the French Army’s orbit they are under the masterful command of Alan H. The buildings to the left represent Wagram. The Austrians across the stream on the escarpment from the battery on the road to the right are von Peter’s charges. There was a rule in place to keep clutter off the table. Some idiot has broken the rule. In the idiot’s defence the game has not yet started. Photo care of John H.

Above: Nansouty’s French Cuirassiers way around opposite the Austrian right flank. These were destined to cause a few challenges for the Austrian command. Photo care of John H.

Above: The extreme left of the Austrian line as the game commenced. The French of Davout (and Montbrun’s cavalry?) posture aggressively against Rosenburgs IV Corps. More of Davout’s troops through the tree line. The burning buildings are those of Markgrafneusiedl. Photo care of John H.

Above: immediately to the Austrian right of Wagram the table looked something like this. Wagram on the left of the picture and Aderklaa on the right. Keith G. held Wagram for the Austrians and most of the Austrians in shot are his to command. von Peter himself strongly suspects that some of the Austrians to the right may be part of Ray H’s Austrian command who were to attack Aderklaa in the game. The mass of French facing Wagram are the play things of Alan H while John H defends Aderklaa and hinterland.  Photo care of John H.

Above: Moving a bit further to the right of the Austrian deployment. That’s Wagram (again!)  upper left with Aderklaa to the right. Those Austrian grenadiers and heavy cavalry are part of Ray H’s command. Photo care of John H.

Above:  An expanded overview of the prior image. Ray H’s Austrian grenadiers and cavalry nicely on show. John H’s opposing French garrison the burning Aderklaa and the immediate supports don’t look up to the job of holding it … but the French had a cunning plan. The Austrian battalion partially in picture bottom right on the other side of the wall are possibly the beginnings of Brian T’s Austrian force. Top right are Russell B’s French being an assortment of guard, cuirassiers, infantry and cavalry. French bully boys to the last man … errr, figure.  😇  Photo care of John H.

Above: An overview looking down the Russbach Stream. Wagram is represented by the nearest set of buildings. Paul has perhaps eaten something that is a little too hot!  Photo care of John H.

Ready, set, let the killing and maiming begin

The clock was set to 10am, 6 July, 1809 – day two of the historic battle. Generals start your armies please.  😃

Though probably the least busy of the players – see why below – von Peter himself has a limited knowledge of the detailed events elsewhere on the table. He’s also idle. So there is not going to be a detailed blow by blow recapitulation of the game. Just a few photos of the general action and a few more focussing on the glory of Hohenzollern’s Austrian II Corps actions … remembering of course that von Peter himself was wearing Hohenzollern’s uniform for the day!  😇

So why was von Peter himself probably the least busy of the players? The French devised a cunning plan to give themselves an unexpected jump on, and an advantage over, the Austrians in the central sector around Aderklaa. Immediately the game started instead of attacking across the Russbach Stream as the history books dictated Oudinot sent the brigades of his second line towards the gap between Wagram and Aderklaa. So a quick quarter turn to the right and a “march” from them and they were departing Hohenzollern’s front.

“The cowards” and “read your history books” loudly proclaimed Hohenzollern to all that cared to listen while he silently thanked his lucky stars at this fortuitous turn of events. Hohenzollern’s finely tuned military brain creaked and complained as it calculated that he should sit still for a turn or two to ensure that those redeploying French troops had indeed left the scene before getting a little aggressive. Unfortunately at that same moment the Austrian suprissimo Archduke Charles – aka Garage Gaming Terry – rode past with some reinforcements for the soon to be hard pressed Rosenburg. Two quick instructions to poor Hohenzollern …

  1. I’m appropriating two of your battalions from your left to assist Rosenburg
  2. attack across the Russbach … now!

D’oh!

Not much later the interfering Archduke Ludwig appeared and made off with two more of Hohenzollern’s battalions from his right flank this time and headed off in the direction of Wagram with them. Double d’oh!

The few photos of the action …

Above: Brian T’s Austrians are attacking the village Breitenlee which is burning. John H’s defending French look to be outmatched … but there’s a lot more French coming down the pike. Garage Gaming Terry’s Austrians hold the extreme right of the Austrian line and there’s a whole bunch of hurt coming his way down that pike. Photo care of John H.

Above:  Davout takes big bites out of Rosenberg’s defensive position. Markgrafneusiedl may be burning but it’s now burning in French hands. Photo care of John H.

Above: Rosenburg – Paul G – feeling the pressure of a well organised attack from Davout. Better quality troops, better command and control and even the dice are making a mockery of the Austrian defensive position. This photo just had to be published as it captures Paul looking like a bewildered man truly suffering under the repeated hammer blows of the cruelly uncaring fates.  😃  The French on the right facing away from the main Austrian position have turned to face the ahistorically arriving Archduke John … who didn’t achieve much this time around either really. Photo care of John H.

Above: The beginnings of the glory of Hohenzollern. The Grenzer have crossed the Russbach Stream and the landwehr gather in a threatening manner. The round command stand at the bottom is Archduke Charles on his return trip to the centre having delivered reinforcements to Rosenberg The square command stand represents the heroic Hohenzollern himself. Photo care of vPh.

Above:  Action around Wagram. Continuing with their cunning plan the French do not attack Wagram itself put poor troops into the area to the right – from the Austrian perspective – of the village. The edge of this action can be seen on the right of this image. Photo care of John H.

Above: Hohenzollern’s Landwehr have stormed across the Russbach Stream and it’s bayonet – or pitchfork?!  😃 – time. The central landwehr battalion has pushed back it’s opponents and it’s neighbours are striving mightily. The whitecoated Austrians are proving to be not that keen to move down off the escarpment to assist their lesser trained comrades. Fuzzy picture care of vPh.

Above: the same scene as the prior image zoomed in and from the French perspective. The Grenzer in the upper right are attracting all sorts of fire and will soon be recovering back behind the buildings of Baumersdorf. Photo from vPh.

Above: Two battalions of landwehr still exist on the French side of the Russbach Stream … and finally here come some of the boys in white. Hurrah! Another fuzzy survivor from vPh’s photographic efforts.

Above:  End of game. Paul G acknowledges the efforts of Hohenzollern’s troops in crossing the Russbach Stream and securing a French free enclave. The Grenzer can be seen reorganising behind Baumersdorf. To the right a division or two of French line that same Russbach Stream. They failed their command roll to cross four turns in a row. Being in line rather than column wouldn’t have helped. And in the interest of full disclosure those two battalions of landwehr at the back of the table aren’t really there. They are rightly to be found recently appended to the casualty lists. Photo care of John H.

Above: Heroes of the Hapsburgs and all around fine upstanding fellows. Left to right Brian, Raymond, Keith, Garage Gaming Terry, von Peter himself, Paul G. Photo care of John H.

Above: Wannabe Napoleons. Left to right Russell, John, Alan, Daniel, Paul W. Photo care of John H.

But there’s more! In effect this one day game was the dress rehearsal to the real reenactment yet to be had. This will take place over the two days – 5 & 6 August 2017 – of the Call to Arms convention in Wellington, New Zealand. Paul W will be adding 3 more boards for the game; reinforcements will not be rushed in as quickly; and a few tweaks may be made. So if you’re in the vicinity please feel free to drop in for a look and a chat.

Idiots corner

von Peter himself is indebted to John H for providing much of the photographic images of the game. Many photos were taken by von Peter himself on the day but his camera settings were incorrectly set for posed, tripod mounted, delayed shutter, long exposure photography not the shaky hand held photography as practiced on the day. The totally predictable result – many blurred and unusable photographs. And as if that was not enough the lighting setting was not quite as it should have been either. What an idiot! Few of von Peter’s photographs escaped the cutting room floor. So a big thank you John for saving the day … … … even if you did masquerade as an evil Frenchman on the day!!  😃

BTW John’s grandfather’s adventures in WWI serving in the 15th Battery, New Zealand Field Artillery are presented on the blog Walk March, Diary of a New Zealand Artilleryman, 1917-1919. New entries are being released on the 100th anniversary of the original diary entry. von Peter himself has read through the blog to date and will keep an eye on the proceedings of Gunner Godfrey Lincoln Lee’s war.

Since we’re in Idiot’s corner … it is highly likely that von Peter himself has butchered some of the history, geography, players, game play or anything really. Should Garage Gaming Terry raise an alert to any of the larger faux pas then von Peter himself may fix it and note the changes.

And for those with an interest … the adjudicating rules were Black Powder with some minor local amendments. The game was hosted by the Wellington Warlords Wargaming Club during one of their regular club days on the 1st July 2017. And if anybody really cares a quick summing up of victory points adjudged the game an honourable draw. Of course the hobby was the real winner on the day!  👍

Don’t forget to click on the images for larger and clearer versions of the same.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Horse and musket bits #2

As per the immediately prior post von Peter himself presents a few public service announcements for The dear readers betterment. And once again those announcements by themselves would be but a meagre offering. Therefore as padding von Peter himself has repeated his raid on the photographic archives to present two more images – albeit of the same scene – from the Seven Years War (SYW).

The SYW Austrian and Prussian armies of von Peter himself were perennially short of commanders. As a triage exercise before a demonstration game at the local Call to Arms convention von Peter himself knocked out an infantry command stand for the Prussians.

The mounted officer’s uniform is based on that of Infantry Regiment 42 – Markgraf Heinrich Fusilier Regiment. It’s not impossible that the officer on foot’s uniform is based on Infantry Regiment 19 – Markgraf Karl Infantry Regiment.

The faces have come out very smoothly. von Peter himself is left wondering what concoction he used for the effect. Unfortunately it’s a mystery that will never be revealed. D’oh!

The figures are the products of Front Rank Figurines, the tree / bush / shrub is from K&M Trees. The photos were snapped in August 2008 … just in case anybody cares. 😃

 

More video wizardry explaining General d’Armee

von Peter himself has stumbled across the YouTube channel A Dash of Élan – Wargaming. It contains many videos on various wargames rules and other wargames topics. Of particular interest is the General d’Armee set of videos. At the time of writing there are 16 videos ranging in duration from 1 minute 32 seconds through 58 minutes and 8 seconds.

Included is a three part Gd’A Game Play …

A THREE part series taking a look at me learning to play General d’Armee.
Covers TWO complete turns of me offering my observations, clarifications, and tips on playing these Napoleonic miniatures rules.

… which run through the rules as used during a game. Collectively the three videos run for around 2.5 hours. von Peter himself has viewed the first of the three and was sufficiently impressed to write/type about it here. Here’s the first of the three …

Some of the other videos may be excerpts from the three Gd’A Game Play videos and allow direct access to various segments off the rules, e.g the Command Phase.

 

General de Brigade scenario Book #7

von Peter himself was caught off guard to discover that a seventh Napoleonic scenario book – Shadows Over the Empire – for General de Brigade has been released.

OUT NOW! The latest in our range of Napoleonic Scenarios books, Volume 7 ‘Shadows Over The Empire’ includes 11 scenarios covering Kalisch, Mockern, Konigswartha, Weissig, Reichenbach, Goldberg, Blankenfelde, Gross-Beeren, Thiessen, Wartemburg and Lindenau.
All are designed for use with any Napoleonic set of rules, though recommended for General de Brigade.

Providing players with terrain maps, troop deployments, objectives and orders of battle – the scenarios can be played individually or in chronological order as per the real campaign.

Available from Caliver Books for £17.99 plus p&p.

Eleven more scenarios from von Peter’s preferred year of 1813. How could this be a bad thing? 😃

 

Impending

There is a game afoot. Quite a big game actually and von Peter himself is destined to be a confused and befuddled participant. Saxons, Bavarians and most importantly Austrians are to be provided from the local resources as the cost of entry. The gods of war have demanded that many Austrians be deployed so von Peter himself is making some meagre additions to his kaiserliks. Hopefully there will soon be some newly raised figures to show off. At least that’s the great hope.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Horse and musket bits

The main reason that von Peter himself brings to The dear readers this post is to be found as the last item below. But that by itself would be but a paltry offering therefore two visions of Prussians of the Seven Years War (SYW) variety are offered up as filler.

The images are from 2007 and show von Peter’s other Prussians deployed ready for battle against some long forgotten foe. That foe is most likely not the SYW Austrians of von Peter himself because a couple of Austrian command stands are deputising as Prussian commanders! Old Fritz would be turning in his grave!!

The SYW project was started not long after von Peter himself completed his university years. So quite a while back. We won’t dwell on how far back! 😃 At the time Military Miniatures – based in Auckland, New Zealand and since morphed into Battlefront – had a licence to cast Front Rank figures. This included the Front Rank SYW range and the easy availablity and relatively good pricing may have played into the thinking of von Peter himself to ‘do’ the SYW. Who now knows?! Two main armies were collected – the Prussians and Austrians. Later a few units of Hanoverians and French were added to the SYW collection.

The basing aesthetics are from a scheme long since abandoned and the units look a little skimpy at 12 figures a unit. Many of the flags were drawn by that clever Alan Hollows with a small number from GMB Designs for those units added long after the initial rush of collecting was over. The figures are Front Rank Figurines.

The infantry:

  • 9/10 von Mollendorf Grenadier Battalion (top picture in the second line with the yellow on their mitres)
  • 19/25 von Ramin Grenadier Battalion (top picture)

Commentary: the grenadier battalions are constituted of the grenadiers from 2 seperate Infantry Regiments. Thus half of each battalion wears the uniform of their parent regiment which includes the unique regimental mitre (tall grenadier head gear with metal front plate, coloured rear and pompom).

  • 1/9 Jung-Kleist Infantry Regiment (bottom picture, flag has a pink cross on a white backgound)
  • 2/9 Jung-Kleist Infantry Regiment (top picture, flag has a pink cross on a green background)
  • 1/10 Pannwitz Infantry Regiment (bottom picture with a white flag)
  • 2/10 Pannwitz Infantry Regiment (top picture with a blue flag)
  • 1/19 Markgraf Karl Infantry Regiment (bottom picture with a red Maltese Cross on a white background flag)
  • 2/19 Markgraf Karl Infantry Regiment (bottom picture with a white Maltese Cross on a red background flag)
  • 1/42 Markgraf Heinrich Fusilier Regiment (bottom picture with a mostly white with some orange flag)
  • 2/42 Markgraf Heinrich Fusilier Regiment (bottom picture with a mostly orange with some white flag)
  • Kleist Freicorps (top picture in green uniforms skirmishing)

The cavalry:

  • 7th Driesen Kuirassier Regiment (first line)
  • 4th Katte Dragoon Regiment (second line)
  • 7th Gelbe (Yellow) (Malachowski) Hussar Regiment (third line)

Commentary: each regiment is present on both wings.

Hopefully the figures still look much as they are seen here. It’s been a while since their boxes were opened.

There is something gentlemanly about mid Eighteenth Century warfare that was lost with the vulgarity of Napoleonic warfare and the mass conscription that fed it. And there is something very pleasing with the simpler SYW uniforms that could still differ significantly from line regiment to line regiment. von Peter himself seems to have a particular taste for horse and musket gaming so it would be a brave man who would bet against these troops once again marching across the table top.

 

General d’Armee: more videos

The TheTooFatLardies have released four more videos to support their – under the guise of  Reisswitz Press – soon to be released Napoleonic rules General d’Armee. Once again the introductory wording has been stolen from the mouths of the TooFatLardies.

Here Game Designer Dave Brown talks about movement and how that is handled in General d’Armee …

General d’Armee author and game designer Dave Brown talks about Firing in this video as he continues his stroll through the game sequence …

In the seventh video in this series, Dave Brown talks about melee in General d’Armee …

In the final video in this series, Dave Brown and his minder play a game of GDA ..

This completes the current release of videos for General d’Armee. And just in time too as the rules are now officially released and available for purchase.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Some Napoleonic bits

Shamefully no newly pigmented figures have rolled off the production line of von Peter himself since the last missive. Soon Dear reader, soon. But still there is information worthy of the effort required to publish it …

General d’Armee: the videos

As has seemingly become their want TheTooFatLardies have created some videos to support the soon to be released Napoleonic rules General d’Armee.

For any of The dear readers who may be a little confused at this juncture please note that General d’Armee is being published by Reisswitz Press which is an arm of that wargaming conglomerate The TooFatLardies (TFL). Reisswitz Press being utilised by TFL to publish rules etc not created by the TooFatLardies themselves. By way of illustration General d’Armee has been penned by David Brown.

So back to the videos with descriptive wordage ‘borrowed’ from the TooFatLardies …

Dave Brown introduces his new Napoleonic wargames rules published by Reisswitz Press. Here Dave talks about the size of forces needed for the rules …

In the second of the General d’Armee series, author, Dave Brown, talks about the game turn and its structure …

Dave Brown talks about the real heart of his new rules, General d’Armee, in the video about Command & Control and Initiative …

Here Dave Brown, author of General d’Armee, talks about the next phase in the game sequence; the Charge. Fix bayonets and enjoy! …

It is the understanding of von Peter himself that that least eight videos have been produced with the remainder soon to put in an appearance.

 

Internecine warfare

The son & heir happened to be on a two week break from his studies in Dunedin. Being of a naturally generous nature he decided that the two weeks would best be spent at Neu Schloss von Peter consuming food, beverages, tv, internet and last but not least hot water.

This was all too much. Such unrestrained raiding could not be left unchallenged. A man needs to protect what is his after all. Armed conflict seemed unavoidable. von Peter himself sent forth a scouting party of Bavarians whilst The son & heir despatched his own scouting force of Prussians. The two bumped into one another in the vicinity of a small farm occupied by a few innocent civilians.

These unfortunates were of great interest to the military men who wished to gently issue them invites – that they couldn’t refuse – back to their respective military camps to ‘discuss’ the local area. If not in the clutches of one of the two militaries the civilian figures could randomly move which annoyingly they mostly chose not to do in the game.

A couple of pictures to recount this episode of kleine warfare at the edge of the main armies. Don’t be forgetting to be clicking the pictures for a larger and clearer view.

Above: Those dastardly Prussians are all over the majority of the civilians early in the game.  The dice were to prove themselves Prussian sympathisers early on.

In the bottom left some Volunteer Jager (green coats) of the 1st Silesian Infantry Regiment and their rifles are taking advantage of a copse of trees to lay down some hurt on a Bavarian Landwehr unit that is to the left of this image.

Poor Gunter – lugging around a sack of produce over his shoulders in the field  at the bottom of the image – is destined to be caught in the crossfire of these two units for several turns and miraculously survived!

In the centre leftish some Prussian Landwehr shelter behind a wall and welcome wheelbarrow pushing Hans into their ranks with the offer of hospitality that he cannot refuse. Hans obviously lost control of the barrow as he pushed it right into the Prussians.

A little up and to the right of the Landwehr a detachment of the 1st Silesian Infantry Regiment have welcomed the farm proprietors Elfriede in her yellow dress and Konrad in his Sunday best green jacket. The offer not to be refused is being made.

Top left a detachment of the 1st Silesian Infantry Regiment with their red flag are escorting Ada off the board prior to their return.

In the top right corner can be seen Clothilda in her red scarf annoying running from the pursuing Bavarians a little of whom can just be made out top right.

Above: Later in the game the Bavarians have managed to assume a central position. Those dastardly Prussians have made off with most of the civilians though out of sight to the left Gunter is still stranded between the lines and Clothilda is being kept close by the Bavarian light troops and their mounted officer at the extreme right behind the tree.

The Prussian troops of the 1st Silesian Infantry Regiment to be seen over the farm buildings have delivered their civilians off table and will soon form a column to storm back up the table to the right of the farm buildings,

The Bavarians in the centre will soon send a detachment of line troops in their corn flower blue and the second detachment of green clad light troops just visible in front of the white washed farm building to the right to try and shoot up the soon to be visiting Prussian column.

The rest of the central Bavarians will pivot to the left to take the Prussian Volunteer jagers – not visible here – under fire.

The dice were to realise the earlier  error of their ways and turn on the dastardly Prussians. The skirmishing Prussian Volunteer Jagers and the main column were to suffer inordinately.

The Bavarians were left with the feel good factor at the end due to some excellent shooting at the death – a poor pun! – but though the Prussians suffered at the end they could claim to be victors as they’d rounded up more civilians and got most of them off table to their camp. And everyone knows that a civilian in the camp is worth more than one in the ranks and still on the table!

A Sharp Practice game.

And of note The son & heir had painted all the Prussians he used in the game except for two mounted officers. The warmonger!  😃

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Bavarian bigwig

Despite the distractions related at the end of this post von Peter himself has managed to complete the transfer of some figures from the “unpigmented figures in reserve” pile to the “play a game so you can use me” pile.

Presenting Generallieutenant Raglovich

In the Order of Battle von Peter himself is using to build his 1813 Napoleonic armies Generallieutenant Raglovich commands the 29th (Bavarian) Division in the XII Corps of the French Army. This is pre the Bavarians seeng the light … or did they see the writing on the wall? … and aligned themselves with the Allies against the French.

From the 29th (Bavarian) Division the brigade of Generalmajor Beckers is almost completely recreated for von Peter himself. A single battalion to go. There is also the Kronprinz Chevauleger which was a corps asset in the same corps as the 29th (Bavarian) Division.

The son & heir has painted a battalion from the brigade of Generalmajor Maillot also of the 29th (Bavarian) Division but is unlikely to paint more. The figures for more are domiciled unpigmented at New Schloss von Peter so the Bavarians will likely grow further in the future. At some time undetermined in the future that is as there are other units that out rank them in the painting queue.

Whatever he may eventually command Generallieutenant Raglovich has arrived to command all Bavarian formations either as an intermediary commander in those larger games or as the CinC when the Bavarians are operating alone.

Because Generallieutenant Raglovich is the CinC for a nation in von Peter’s basing regime he gets a rectangular base rather than the round base of lesser commanders.

The narrative is that the good Generallieutenant Raglovich is receiving a report from an Aide de Camp who is doffing his hat in respect. A staff officer accompanies the Generallieutenant and is keenly observing his reaction to the report. An officer on foot listens in wondering what the report means for his battalion.

And then we have the chap below. Shall we call him Wilhem? When von Peter himself originally selected the figures for the Bavarian CinC stand Wilhelm was included. Then the time finally came to organise and attach them to the base and it became clear that this mounted figure was a mounted figure too far. So it came to pass that Kapitän(?) Wilhelm was allocated to a base all of his own. As such he can act as an ADC, decoration or as a leader in Sharp Practice games.

Above: Kapitän(?) Wilhelm. Embarrassingly von Peter himself has left a mould line on the poor horses face. Bad von Peter himself!

Credits:

  • figures from Front Rank Figurines
  • coloured pigments laid down by Nigel Fun-nell
  • horse painting, figure selection, figure choreography and basing by von Peter himself.

Nigel returned these figures pigmented literally years ago. Other figures receipted at the same time were dealt with in the appropriate manner but the move to Neu Schloss von Peter resulted in this lot being “filed” away. They can finally take their place in the line of battle. Willing to give their lives in the service of von Peter himself. Hey … what’s all that muttering and complaining coming from the display cabinet?! SILENCE UNGRATEFULS!! 😃

A scullery maid?

Another figure from Front Rank Figurines has rolled off the production lines. This time a civilian from the Napoleonic Civilians pack CNPK4. By pure chance she wears a blue similar to the Bavarians above but it is nothing more than a coincidence.

von Peter himself got it into his head that he didn’t necessarily want to base all of his civilians on dirt as he does for his military chaps. So after a little exhausting cogitation some paved effect bases were ordered from Renedra Limited. (And of course one does not order a few grams of plastic all the way from the UK to NZ all by itself. That would be just crazy. So a few other items were appended to the order. It was the sensible thing to do you understand!  😇)

The problem with the textured plastic bases was that the base of the miniature figure would sit proud on top of it. One could get all creative with several solutions but von Peter himself took the idle approach – of course! – and just glued the figure on to the base. It really isn’t that noticeable in real life. Filing down the figures base wouldn’t be such a bad idea though.

The current plan is to always have a civilian figure ‘on the go’ on the painting desk so one will pop out every now and then. They will be useful as decoration in the larger scaled games and even more so in Sharp Practice games where they are also at risk of becoming part of the scenario.

General d’Armee: They Talk to the Game Designer and available to preorder

Should The dear reader be interested there is a General d’Armee: We Talk to the Game Designer article on the TheTooFatLardies site. And should The dear reader be inspired …

… General d’Armee is now available to preorder the TheTooFatLardies site in two permutations:

  • a physical rulebook running to 108 pages in length, two A4 laminated playsheets and a ‘free’ pdf copy of the rules. At £24.00 this saves the purchaser £16 off list price.
  • as per the above but with the addition of two sets of Game Tokens in ‘vibrant” – whatever vibrant means! – MDF for £32.00. A  saving of £18.

The pdfs will be emailed on 21 May 2017 because that’s when the rules will be released.

 

You too can hear Adrian Goldsworthy

von Peter himself is familiar with the name Adrian Goldsworthy as the author of non fiction books on the Roman army. But apparently he has written books of a fictional nature as well on topics other than the Roman army. Who would have thought!

Episode 6 of the Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy podcast is entitled “Bootleg Goldsworthy” as part of the show is a recording of a presentation given by Mr Goldsworthy at a wargames convention. The presentation ranges over various topics including ancient warfare and the war game rules that try to recreate it. Worth a listen.

Get yourself a copy from from iTunes or here … or possibly some other feed!

The internet as an agent of distraction

Way back when Apple stopped supporting its website building software iWeb von Peter himself called time on his original combined website & blog as the proverbial writing was on the proverbial wall.

This left a bitter taste in the mouth of von Peter himself as years of work was no longer available on the web. Unfortunately such abandonment of software and its users is far from unique in this modern disposable easy come easy go world. Rant mode off! 😃

Above: A blast from the past – the top of the Home page of the original von Peter himself website (from within the iWeb tool which explains some of the unexpected lines to be seen)

The cunning plan was to replace it with this blog and a new traditional website at http://vonpeterhimself.com. The blog thing worked out just fine. At least von Peter himself is of that opinion. Your milage may vary! The second version of the website not so much. It never really progressed anywhere. But that is changing as a third version is being created.

von Peter himself has come over all enthusiastic and finds himself tempted away from the painting desk to “play” with a new website. This activity is for now a challenging yet agreeably enjoyable pastime. Unfortunately this comes at the cost of time at the painting desk. Just when a routine of regular painting had been bedded in too. D’oh!

More on this should the plans achieve anything worthy of notification.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself