The media edition

A media centric update for any of The dear readers who may be interested enough and savvy enough to take advantage! ¬†ūüėÉ

Podcast corner

Those rule writing men of¬†TooFatLardies are now podcasting¬†oddcasting. From the announcement blurb …

Looking to keep abreast of what is happening on Lard Island?  well, here’s a new way to do so with the Lardy Oddcast, a semi-regular show hosted by international wargaming celebrity and well known washing-line Commando, Sidney Roundwood.  This show, recorded in the Lard Island Broadcasting Studios on London’s Drury Lane, focusses on telling us what we can expect in future and talking to the two men behind TooFatLardies, Richard Clarke and Nick Skinner, and asking them to give their view on what Lard means to them.

You can see the official Lardy announcement here. And for The dear readers convenience von Peter himself provides the direct link to the TooFatLardies Oddcast One.

 

Old school wargaming with some famous identities

Way back in 1978 a six part half hour television program was made entitled Battleground. The were narrated by the actor Edward Woodward and showed some wargaming luminaries fighting some famous battles from history.

von Peter himself remembers Edward Woodward as Callan from the series and film of the same name. von Peter himself has vague memories a of a wargame featuring somewhere along the line …

Woodward was a wargamer and hosted a series of programmes for Tyne Tees Television in 1978 about the hobby with fellow enthusiast Peter Gilder, who built and owned the beautiful Gettysburg diorama used for one of the gaming scenes from the 1974 film Callan.

The Battleground series features some rather well known wargamers some of whom are sadly no longer with us though their names live on in the books and inspiration that they have left to us. It’s nice to observe them in action … though von Peter himself feels sure that they are on their best behaviour for the camera! ¬†ūüėÉ

Four of the Battleground episodes are available on good old YouTube РEdgehill, Waterloo, Chalons and Gettysburg.

The Gettysburg episode features Peter Gilder and Paddy Griffith. A better quality version of this episode is available …

 

Grab yourself some popcorn and avail yourself of some wargaming history … and nostalgia.

 

Enough.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

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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? ¬†ūüėá

** ‘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‚ÄôArmee 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! ¬†ūüėÉ

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! ¬†ūüėÉ

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! ¬†ūü•ā ¬†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! ¬†ūüėÉ

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! ¬†ūüėÉ

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!! ¬†ūüėá

Enough.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Snippets #6

The third post in a calendar month. An outstanding effort … even if von Peter says so himself. ¬†ūüėÉ

 

Trees

von Peter himself has ‘grown’ his first pack of¬†4Ground¬†trees. For the record the pack was “4 Young Chestnut Trees”. Some lessons were learned along the way. Nothing major and mostly to do with the holes on the optional sabot base and the plastering around them. Hopefully the building of the ¬†next packs will benefit from the ¬†learnings.

The plastic branches are bendable so the shape of the tress can be modified. In this pack there were two larger trees of approximately 11.5cm and two smaller of approximately 9.5cm.

Above: three of the young chestnut trees in their sabot base and one individualist who is not.

 

Wagram II – the game that keeps giving

Archduke Charles – aka¬†Garage Gaming Terry¬†– has posted a couple items regarding the Wagram II game on his¬†a¬†Garage Gaming Terry¬†blog with more planned. To date he has created …

There are more articles to come.

And then there were a couple more photographic recreations of the Wagram II game …

Above: This picture shows the extent of¬†GdK von Peter himself Freidrich Hohenzollern’s Austrian II Army Corps. Oh … and the bodies in the background are the Saturday Wagram II crew. Motley covers it! ¬†ūüėɬ†¬†Photo care of John H.

Above: a shameful scene from the Sunday. Two Saxon battalions in front of Austrian artillery – and the rest of the Austrian army! – being used as some sort of ablative armour for the ‘brave’ French troops wearing bear skins behind them. The 1/Prinz Maximilian Infantry Regiment – white flag with red border – appears to be formed in some sort of square arrangement while the¬†2/von Rechten Infantry Regiment – yellow flag – is in line. Yet more shoddy treatment of the Saxons by their French allies / overlords! ¬†‚ö†ÔłŹ ¬†Photo care of John H.

 

Eagle dice

Yet more dice have arrived at Neu Schloss von Peter from the dice peddlers at Dice of War. The drip feed of national dice continues with eagles being the theme this time around. Austrian dice in yellow and Russian dice in green.

Bavarian and Polish dice are left to collect for the armies with barracks at¬†Neu Schloss von Peter. The completist in von Peter himself is singing a rather fetching and compelling song. The completist is obviously a stark raving mad thing …. but von Peter himself is a grown man who plays with toy soldiers so don’t write off the chances of seeing pictures of Bavarian and Polish dice on this here blog. We loves getting pressies in the mail we do!! ¬†ūüėá

 

If von Peter himself can get the photography sorted there will be a “The Heroes of Wagram” or some such presentation upcoming. This will present the newly formed Austrian troops recruited for the Wagram games and perhaps some of the refurbished troops as well. But hopefully not next time. Next time von Peter himself will be reporting on an event he is very much looking forward to. Hopefully!

 

Enough.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Wagram II

Wagram II has come and gone. Gone several weekends ago in actuality. von Peter himself really should write up something about it!

Why Wagram II? Because Wagram I had been fought a few weeks prior. If this is news to The dear reader then details can be found here. Wagram II was enlarged in almost all respects over Wagram I …

  • Paul W had confirmed his particular brand of madness by expanding his custom terrain
  • more units had been added
  • the game was to be played over two days rather than just the one
  • more terrain and more units of course meant more players.

For the record Wagram II was played over the weekend of the 5 & 6 August 2017 at the Wellington Warlords annual Call to Arms convention in Wellington, New Zealand.

Wagram II may have been scheduled for two days but von Peter himself was scheduled for Day 1 – Saturday – only. von Peter himself would be reprising his¬†GdK Freidrich Hohenzollern role as commander of the Austrian II Army Corps. It was fervently hoped that at the end of Day 1 there would still be a II Corps to hand over to Ray H who would take over on Day 2. Fortunately only a single battalion had been lost from II Corps by the time of the hand over. Admittedly some of the other units were a little battle worn … but this was war. What does one expect?! ¬†ūüėá

Above: the extension to the playing surface at the extreme right of the Austrian line. A burnt out Aspern at the near table edge and Essling at the far edge are on display. The scene before the battle commenced.

Above: The extreme left of the Austrian line shows more additional real estate in the environs of¬†Markgrafneusiedl. This image from the end of day 1 – Saturday. The gentleman stooped over the table is Garage Gaming Terry¬†who herded the cats to make the game an actuality. Most people had already left the convention for the day. Only a few fools left! ¬†ūüėÉ

Above: early action in the environs of¬†Markgrafneusiedl. Grouchy – Brian S – commanded the troops at this extreme end of the French line and by all accounts his command rolls were the worst ever seen by the the surrounding players. Failed command rolls and blunders were to be Grouchy’s constant companion over the two days of the game. It is to Grouchy’s great personal credit that he suffered these continual disruptions to his plans with good humour and sangfroid. A fine example of gaming etiquette to us all.

And before any unfortunate rumours should start the stain / wet patch on the table between the opposing lines was a donation from a spectator who leaned over the tale with his cup of coffee! ¬†‚ėēÔłŹ¬† ūüöę

Some more pictures from the end of Day 1 …

Above: the French have finally claimed Markgrafneusiedl at the bottom left of the photo though the tower remains Austrian territory. The fall of Markgrafneusiedl has meant that  the adjoining French have begun their attacks over the stream.

Above: the central battlefield. One of the first actions in this sector was the powerful French cuirassier command blundering and disappearing off the back of the table … and not coming back until near the end of Day 1! Shame!! ¬†ūüėÉ ¬†Rumours circulated around the Austrian command that many a French brigade had been chewed up and spat off the table in this sector.

Above: Aspern has just been reclaimed for France. The Austrians had made a lightening raid down the table to claim Aspern despite the off board French batteries from¬†across the Danube. Napoleon released several formations including the Bavarians, cavalry and some guard artillery from his reserve to hold and then push back the brave Austrians. Not that¬†Archduke Charles was as thrilled as one might expect. The charge down to Apsern had meant charging past the open flank of the main French line. A quick left turn and an even quicker piling into that open flank had been the Archduke’s plan! The joys and unpredictability of multi player gaming. ¬†ūüėÉ

Unfortunately this is where the photography ends. von Peter himself arrived near the end of Day 2 to see the final moves – and recover his figures! – but there was an almighty rush to pack away the figures, terrain and tables once the final dice had been rolled.

From the keen observations of von Peter himself throughout Day 1 the game had been a success on several levels …

  • the game had spurred on the painting output of several gamers
  • there seemed to be many gamers having fun playing the game and the related social intercourse
  • quite a few spectators spectated over the game. Some making multiple visits to keep abreast of the proceedings. Some were even lucky enough to engage in verbal dialogue with von Peter himself and they were universally complimentary in their comments.

As to the result … not that it really matters with the hobby being the winner etc etc etc.¬†Once the points for brigades lost, commanders lost, terrain features lost and held had been totted up the Austrians were ahead by a whole 3 points. Given the scale of the game this was an amazingly close result and some would argue not without reason – and mostly with a French accent! – that it really was a draw. There are many reasons to agree with such a politically correct sentiment but we – the victorious Austrians – know differently!! ¬†ūüŹÜ¬†¬†ūüėÉ

Idiots corner – the latest rendition

So there was von Peter himself¬†on the Saturday morning of the game all ready to travel from New Schloss von Peter to the field of battle. Those unbearable over reaching and overly smug French required a damned good kicking for the honour and glory of Austria. They were due!¬†von Peter himself was planning to do his bit by (hopefully!) holding his portion of the line whilst other Austrian commanders garnered the glory by crushing their opponents … or at least not suffering too severely. It’s always good to have a plan!

Fraulien von Peter herself had most kindly “volunteered” to play the part of the Austrian Transport Corps and deliver von Peter himself, troops and assorted supplies to the venue. The carriage¬†car was loaded and we were all set to leave on the big military adventure. But something didn’t quite feel right. von Peter himself set his sights on a quick final check inside New Schloss von Peter¬†to make sure that nothing had been inadvertently overlooked. However upon trying to reenter New Schloss von Peter¬†the evil and apparently French sympathising Keela – the local Irish Terrier of ever growing ill repute – managed to escape her incarceration and make a dash for freedom or at least the grounds of¬†New Schloss von Peter. After much cursing and cajoling the errant still a puppy thing was finally restored to the prison that is the inside of¬†New Schloss von Peter. Crucially no check had been made of the internals of¬†New Schloss von Peter.¬†(The Keela thing could now relax. Her job was complete. Surely that¬†Ordre national de la L√©gion d’honneur would now be hers!)

“Have you quite finished and can we get going?” enquired the uppity transport driver¬†Fraulien von Peter herself.¬†She had many plans for her day once she had divested herself of her toy soldier playing spouse. A still muttering von Peter himself clambered into the¬†carriage¬†car and good time was made to the venue as we beat the worst of the traffic. A quick unloading of the contents of the¬†carriage¬†car and a much relieved¬†Fraulien von Peter herself¬†finally made her escape to her own day.

After some obligatory socialising – well you’ve got to really don’t you – the task of unpacking and setting up the troops began. This was going swimmingly with the usual associated banter until someone asked for von Peters Austrian dragoons that they were to command. Immediately von Peter himself had a good old fashioned heart stopping “Oh bugger!” moment. The tray of Austrian cavalry had not made it into the¬†carriage¬†car. The Austrians would be down a unit each of hussars and dragoons … and two units of kuirassiers!

On the plus side of the ledger the evil Keela had been outed as a French agent by her dastardly actions of distraction. On the minus side those four Austrian cavalry units were required to help see off the French and their minions.

In the end all was put to rights. The cavalry literally came riding to the rescue thanks to the good offices of transport driver Fraulien von Peter herself who wasted a further two hours of her finely tuned day on an extra return journey in an ever increasing morass of traffic to the venue. Not that she was totally happy about it. Not that you could blame her. A big thank you to the Austrian transport drivers who put in a battle saving performance on the day.

Now … where did that Keela get to? We have some business to discuss … again!!! ¬†ūüźē¬† ūüöę

If any more pictures of Wagram II come to light they may get posted in the future. And there is an accumulation of bits and pieces that await dissemination that similarly await a future post. For now this is von Peter himself signing off.

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Snippets #4

Wagram II … it’s nearly time

The second coming of the Wagram game is on this coming weekend Р5 & 6 August 2017 Рat 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! ūüėÉ

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 ‚ÄúForeign Regiments in French Service Volume 5: The Polish Legions 1798-1814‚ÄĚ. The blurb ‚Ķ

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! ¬†ūüėé

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 ‚ā¨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. ¬†ūüėÉ

 

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! ¬†ūüėá

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Wagram

Perhaps The dear reader has heard of the Battle of Wagram. Garage 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 J√§ger 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! ūüėᬆWhatever 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. ¬†ūüėᬆ 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. ¬†ūüėÉ

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! ¬†ūüėá

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. ¬†ūüėɬ† 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 Рfrom the Austrian perspective Рof 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?! ¬†ūüėɬ†– 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!! ¬†ūüėÉ

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! ¬†ūüĎć

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

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself

Snippets #3

Another odds and sods ends post. Looking to the future¬†one of the numerous mini projects of von Peter himself ¬†is somewhat surprisingly coming to fruition. With a little luck the presentation of said¬†mini project will form the core of the next bulletin. But¬†now we need to start with the traditional Snippets random picture from the archives … from March 2011 …

Above: The first battalion of the Saxon Prinz Maximilian Infantry Regiment marches through a village somewhere in Saxony in 1813. The Allies are out there somewhere and the village may soon be the site of some bloody fighting.

Calpe Miniatures¬†Saxons painted by mineself von Peter himself. The European Village is a¬†Hudson & Allen model sourced¬†from Vatican Enterprises¬†and pigmented with aplomb by Craig Watterson. Tufts added to the village by von Peter himself! ¬†ūüėÉ

Don’t forget to click the pictures for a larger and clearer view.

Salute 2017: discounts

Once upon a time long long ago von Peter himself and The son & heir were fortunate enough to visit Salute Zero Nine the 2009 iteration of the famed Salute convention in London. It was their first ever major wargames show and it was quite the experience and eye opener.

Above: Barry Hilton’s Peninsular demonstration game for Victrix at Salute Zero Nine. The game was played using Barry’s The March of Eagles rules which at the time were provided in every box of Victrix plastics. I wonder if they still are?

While admiring the game¬†von Peter himself said “hello” to a busy Barry H. and Barry H. said “hello” back. Another precious memory locked away! ¬†ūüėÉ

Catastrophically a repeat Salute visit is not to be scried in von Peter’s Crystal Ball of Future Seeing. No matter how hard it is rubbed. So it is with a tinge of envy that this blog reports on some of the pre-order discounts available to the attendees of Salute 2017 which by the way is scheduled for 22 April 2017.

Wargame News and Terrain have the article Salute 2017 Convention Pre-Order Discounts Summary for them fortunate enough to be heading off to Salute 2017. Some vendors have been of a thoughtful enough disposition to open up the discounts to them not so fortunate to be attending.

Update for General d’Armee 

Not only will The dear reader be able to avail themselves of discounts if they attend Salute 2017 but they will also have the chance to view a demonstration of the incoming General d’Armee rules by Dave Brown. Gardening at Dresden will feature apparently. This from the Lard Island News.

From the same source comes the news that the these same General d’Armee rules will be released at Partizan on the 21st May. This is a slippage from the previously mentioned April but in the end it will be what it will be. Hopefully a tantalising pre release deal or two will be offered on the TheTooFatLardies site.

A painted TravelBattle

Alan Perry has painted the soon to be released TravelBattle to represent Waterloo Allies and their French opponents. s painted game in a box? See the Perry Miniatures Facebook page for more.

A caged eagle

While browsing through The family’s photo collection von Peter himself stumbled across several photos of the captured Eagle of the Napoleonic French 82nd Line Infantry Regiment. The bird can be seen¬†in the Royal Fusiliers Regimental Museum¬†situated within The Tower of London. So with no further ado …

Above: In 1809, the Royal Fusiliers joined an army sent to capture the French colony of Martinique. After a difficult fight, the French were besieged.  Four days later they surrendered and three Eagle Standards were captured by the British.  The Royal Fusiliers were awarded this standard as a reward for their accomplishments in the battle.

 

Until we meet again …

Salute
von Peter himself