Tuesday 31 March 2020

Quick Change - Hanoverian Horse Artillery

I've had these half done for weeks but finally completed them this evening. They represent Hanoverian Horse Artillery from the French Revolutionary Wars.  Hanover was early to introduce horse artillery into their army compared to most nations and I assume at least a company would have been with the army in Flanders in 1793-95.

Now, these figures are actually old Foundry 1806 Saxon Horse Artillery that I bought for 50% off at Hammerhead in 2019. I already have more Saxon 1806 gunners than I can use so why did i buy them.......? 'Cos they were cheap.

The style of the uniform isn't correct but as I said, they represent the Horse Artillery in my army so I don't care as the uniform is very colourful and cool, and who can tell from two feet away? I'm quite pleased with them and they've quickly been exchanged with the Prussian models that were doing service as Hanoverians in my current game. They had a quick change behind the caisons maybe?

I've completed another three turns of my play by email/solo game today, 6, 7 and 8, and things are hotting up nicely, but I'm too tired to write it up tonight so assuming you're interested you will have to wait.

French Revolutionary Wars Campaign game, Part 1, Turns 1 to 5

I wanted to keep some momentum going in our FRW campaign as there are several battles to fight or likely to happen soon in campaign time. I set up the second day of the action at Hondschoote, which involved reorienting the battle field slightly, and asked the commanders for general orders after sending them photos of the table and dispositions (that they would be able to see from horseback or atop a windmill etc). As you can see from the photos the Hanoverians and Hessians in and around Hondschoote face the French from the West and the East, with the North effectively blocked off as there is a canal(off table)  running the full length of the table with only a single small bridge crossing it for miles in either direction.

I played turns 1 and 2 last night and turns 3, 4 and 5 this afternoon, sending emails and photos at the end of each turn, allowing the commanders to respond or change orders should they wish. I’m afraid I was pretty ruthless as I didn’t wait too long for responses before carrying on with the next turn. Fog of War and all that!

I don't want to give too much away to the players involved so there's little in the way of commentary. That will come when the battle is over.

I was using General d'Armee as is now usual. Great fun, especially when the ADCs weren't there when needed and some dire activation throws buggered up the action for both sides. In one turn, with a combined total of 12 possible ADCs, I managed to get three and that included the free one for one of the commanders who was classed as superior or whatever! Initiative rolls were also frustrating. The Hanoverians threw a 5 in T2. What did the French throw? Snake Eyes!

So, without giving anything away I shall only say that it could still go either way even though the Hanoverians (by and large the better troops) are the jam in the sandwich. We shall see. I just need von Freytag to update me on his plans and for Jourdan and Houchard to try and get it together.

Next turn or two after lunch.

Tuesday 24 March 2020

So funny and appropriate for these troubled times!

I was randomly trawling through the internet this evening and saw this on Caliver Books website. You have to laugh! I have a copy somewhere I think.....

French Horse Artillery French Revolutionary Wars

Another unit completed today, a company of French Horse Artillery wearing (with a couple of exceptions) a tarleton helmet and long tailed coats. They look a bit smart even if I say so myself. The figures are Eureka collected at Salute 2019.

Of course my French don't really.need any more horse artillery but at least they now have them in several different modes.of dress and headgear. I think I've settled.on three gun models per company for horse artillery and four for foot artillery, but I guess it depends upon the scenario.

Back to the painting desk now to carry on chipping away at the lead mountain and the drawer of doom. But as they say, one can eat an elephant but do it in small bites, unless there's been a run of elephants in the shops and there are none left!

Keep safe.

Sunday 22 March 2020

Hanoverian 14th Light Infantry Regiment Skirmishers

As planned I've managed to get the skirmish bases completed for this unit. I've already got them in close order but as I use Gen d'Armee I needed them in skirmish order as well because as a light infantry regiment they can operate in either. These are all Victrix plastic Austrian Napoleonic Landwehr with a couple of early French bodies to add a little variety. I'm quite pleased with the way they've turned out although it may be a while before they see action unless I play something solo or can find a way using technology to involve another player.

It's been a madhouse by t also a very productive week. Even if I am locked up for 12 weeks I somehow doubt I'll run out of figures!

Hussards de la Mort

Formerly RSM Seven Years War Prussian Hussars.  I decided I didn't need a hussar regiment of 36 figures in my Prussian SYW army so added a load more skulls to this dozen, tidied them up a bit, and hey presto! The unit was never especially large but in my universe it is. Must admit they look better this way than in their previous uniform.
They've already been in action in the FRW campaign and will be again very soon.

Friday 20 March 2020

Hanoverian French Revolutionary Wars Artillery

I unexpectedly finished these off this evening. I say unexpectedly as I didn’t think I had any spare suitable cannon, but a delve I to the box of doom produced these three, already painted red. It’s another company of Hanoverian artillery to join my  FRW forces. The castings are actually Eureka FRW Russians but they are a close match and look the part. I just trimmed the long pigtails and the rest is paint. They will be joining their comrades in arms in my FRW campaign and may well be in action very soon where they will hopefully acquit themselves better than “new unit syndrome” might otherwise dictate. I’m making steady progress through the stuff on the painting table. When that’s all done (Ha!) I can dig deep and get going on something else. But what......?

Thursday 19 March 2020

New Seven Years War books off Helion

I was recently fortunate enough to be sent copies of these two book by Helion. While not actually new, both are second editions of the classic Duffy books published many years ago,  and I understand Helion have acquired the ‘back catalogue’ of Christopher Duffy’s works. I already own dusty old somewhat tattered copies of the original versions of both books so these two are very welcome additions to the library.

It goes without saying that both these books are a must for anybody with an interest in the Seven Years War, and the level of detail and the narrative is superb. Neither volume is a rewrite, but typos and such from the originals have been corrected. Given the price of some original Duffy books, these included, the initiative by Helion to publish new editions at affordable costs is to be commended. I’ll do a more detailed review of each shortly for the benefit of anybody who’s never seen or read them. Back to the lead mountain!

Hanoverian 14th Light Infantry Regt, French Revolutionary Wars

It’s day 2 of  “I’m a wargamer; I have a lead mountain to paint!”

The Hanoverian army of the 1790s boasted one light infantry regiment on its strength, the 14th.  That being the case I decided I just had to field the unit for the current Flanders campaign I’m running, and why not? The nearest I could find to a suitable figure (long coat tails, Corsican hat, etc) were the Victrix Austrian Napoleonic Landwehr, and as luck would have it I had a box under the table doing nothing.

The uniform is quite straightforward and looks rather nice I think. Most of the unit were armed with muskets (another reason why the Landwehr set work) but two companies, dressed in green rather than grey, were armed with rifles. I already have these so now they have a parent unit. I decided to start with the regiment in close order, especially as the Victrix figures don’t really lend themselves to depicting skirmishers. I’ve also given them a flag although they didn’t carry one. This one is for the 14th Regiment dated 1786, before they became light infantry. I think it looks ok and not out of place. I’m in the middle of putting together enough figures to make four bases of skirmishers using a mix of  pieces from the my collection of unused plastic Perry and Victrix Napoleonics. I expect to get these completed by the end of the week and based up over the weekend. I’m not a great fan of 28mm plastics but from a cost and quality point of view you can’t really knock them. I just keep remembering the months of my life I will never get back sticking together several different armies of Warhammer Fantasy figures back in the dim and sadly not too distant past.

Anyway, more coffee is required so I shall go and then get back to supervising the rearranging of furniture in the Burrow in order to accommodate another set of shelves for the ever growing library.

Keep well and keep painting.

Tuesday 17 March 2020

Yet more French Revolutionary Wars additions

A couple more additions for the Flanders Campaign. Above we have Hompesch’s Chasseurs who reportedly were a fine fighting unit and served throughout the campaign and the withdrawal into Hanover. The Hompesch is the same Hompesch who were know for the Hompesch Mounted Chasseurs that fought in Egypt. These are some Perry Austrian j├Ąger with new heads in the crested round hat style. They are armed with rifles.
This is a new command stand for my Emigre forces, depicting the Conde himself, accompanied by a staff officer and a mounted young lady in the uniform of the Bercheny hussars who might or might not be Mrs Conde. These are all Stadden figures from the bottom of my box of doom.
That’s it for now. Almost done is a battalion of the Hanoverian 14th (Light) infantry, but in close order. I will then do the same battalion in skirmish order to join the two rifle companies of this regiment that I already have.

French Revolutionary Wars additions

The first offering this week is some more cavalry for my Anglo-Hanoverians  in Flanders in the shape of the 2nd Dragoons aka The Scots Greys. According to the only source I've found, the Osprey book, the Greys didn't wear grenadier caps in the 1790s, having dispensed with them 10 or more years previously,  and would t readopt them until 1807. I also reckon they'd keep them for parades and wear bicornes even if they were supposed to wear them. The figures are from Trent and are not bad bit would benefit from a command pack.
 Next a commander for my Emigres, this one dressed in the snazzy uniform of the Mirabeau Legion. Just an old Elite Minis General with a head swap. He will do.

If I'm to be household for the next 1,000,000 years I hope I can a) get through some of the lead mountain and b) evolve into an Eloi rather than a Morloch. Someone's selling bog roll down the pub at £50 a roll so better go before curfew. 

Monday 16 March 2020

The Saxon Mars and His Force - Book Review

What a super book. For some bizarre reason I have a soft spot for the Saxon army in the 17th and 18th centuries so this lovely book floats my boat in every respect. A niche subject perhaps but it contains a wealth of fascinating information about the development and composition of the Saxon army and its campaigns during the latter end of the 17th century, a time when the country was a bit of a mover and shaker in Western Europe and against the Ottomans further East. Tremendous colour plates, lots of black and white illustrations. Helion continues to produce book after good quality book under the banner of the Century of the Soldier series and this is another great addition, and one I bought myself for a change! I have plans, and the castings already, to beef up my late 17thC Saxons in order to fight the dreaded Turk so this book and the information therein is a tremendous bonus. 

Sunday 15 March 2020

Hammerhead 2020 Show Report

John and I made the perilous trip south to visit Hammerhead on Saturday. Conversation focussed on the Covid-19 virus of course, as well as my French Revolutionary Wars campaign. We arrived shortly before opening time and although there was a queue it was processed efficiently and we were quickly in and went our different ways after a circuit of the bring and buy.

Hammerhead is a 100% participation game event and there were some pretty good looking games available for the punters to take part in. Many were clearly very well subscribed; a few appeared to be less of a draw and were, at least at the time of my several circuits of the show, barren and unplayed. I took a few pictures using my phone of a very few of the more eye-catching games, i.e. stuff I had a personal interest in (period/mates running it, etc) and the absence of a picture of YOUR game is by no means judgemental on my part. Also, with a couple of exceptions I don't recall who the games were staged by.

I was talking to a few guys over lunch (including a bloke called David iirc and Wayne Bollands, formerly of Wargames Illustrated) and we noted that the show was attracting a very visible proportion of mothers/wives/girlfriends and younger children, which has got to be a good thing. In my view the footfall appeared less than last year but I don't know for sure. Of course much of the talk centred around 'The Virus' and its likely negative impact on the hobby, especially for traders. Rumour Control was running overtime about whether Salute was on or off. The official line from the South London Warlords is that Salute in ON until someone says something different, e.g. if Excel decide to cancel it.

Anyway, Hammerhead was a good day out although I got to meet up with far fewer people whom I know than is normal but did say hello to Rob Anderson, the Lads of Like a Stonewall and Charles of Helion. I did chat with a number of traders and fellow punters about the usual stuff, and Dave and Mrs Ryan about Indian holidays. Perhaps being over 60, etc etc and therefore in the 'at risk' category put a few folks off.

I didn't buy much. A few desert type walls for India, some paddy fields, sundry late 17thC generals off Northumbria Painting Services and a War of 1812 boardgame in the bring and buy for a tenner.

Big FRW campaign battle next Saturday so lots to prepare for that!