Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Thoughts on basing.

When first returning to the hobby I simply glued my little 1/72nd scale figures to pennies, this gave them some weight and stopped them toppling over at the slightest knock of the table. At that time I was simply painting for pleasure with no real thoughts about actually wargaming with them. The pennies were then given a coat of PVA (wood glue) and then sprinkled with a mixture of various green flocks. They looked good to me.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015


It was a cold dark night. Lightning crashed against the mountain peaks. Then out of the darkness came a hideous site. "OK River it's your turn"..

I've been promising my daughter River a game of "soldiers" for a few weeks now. Finally with Xmas over with I could get the kitchen table cleaned and make a battle field.

I decided to give Bob's rules a go as he kindly sent me a copy to look at. All I can say is we both had a lot of fun. The rules played smoothly and I believe another game or 2 and River should know the rules off by heart.

I started to use a tape measure but soon made a wicky* stick which was a lot easier for River to manage.

So now onto the battle.

The evil Goblin Warlord musters her minions.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Going Solo - What is the point? Where is the enjoyment?

To many the idea of solo wargaming just holds no appeal and is quite understandable in part. The whole point is to pit your wits against an opponent, feel the satisfaction of a victory or disappointment of a defeat, if only the dice roll had gone in my favour when the cavalry went in, the result could have been totally different!

The soloist has to study the table from both sides and decide on the best strategy for both forces. I like to study the battlefield and both forces, come up with a basic plan for both sides, based on strengths and weaknesses of the forces.  A little pictorial example may help.

I am currently experimenting with Lion Rampant, a rule set for skirmish type games in the Dark Ages/Medieval period. In the first photo the Lancastrian raiding force has been pillaging the village to their rear. A Yorkist flying column of light troops has hurriedly been dispatched to deal with the threat. The latter have a slightly larger but, man for man, a weaker force. The Lancastrians fancy their chances and form up for battle. ( A short piece of background to give meaning to the battle)

Closest the camera is a unit of Bill men who wear some armour, to their left is a unit of six foot knights in full armour (strongest foot units in the game). In the centre is a unit of crossbowmen and beyond them another Bill men and finally the leader with his mounted men at arms.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Solo Wargaming - more thoughts.

Does going solo take a particular type of person? Possibly. but I enjoy solo wargaming and consider myself a very sociable animal, I enjoy the company of others for the most part. That said, I am more than happy in my own company too. Jekyll and Hyde personality perhaps? I can easily switch between the two and enjoy doing so. The regular meetings online of the Table Top Commanders for a paint and chat session, is something I always look forward to.

Setting up a solo game is always an enjoyable experience, what is the period, scale, scenario, forces available and back story? Let us take each of those topics in order.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Solo Wargaming or is it?

By choice or necessity, solo wargaming is always an option. For many the thought of simply having to collect and paint up two opposing armies is enough to put them off. Quite true, going solo means double the cost and work required. There is the lack of interaction with an opponent whose tactics might be totally different to what you yourself would have employed. Sharing a few glasses of your preferred beverage and a lot of laughs with a like minded opponent is sadly not the lot of the solitary gamer.

Or is it...?

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Neil's Project Page: The Holy Land - part 2

The Holy land - part 2

This week I thought I would talk more about my basing decision and what effect it has on the gaming value of this army.

When looking in a rule book one of the first things it will tell you is the basing conventions for the rules. This depends a lot on what the rules are trying to represent. Is the set a skirmish set with 10 to 40 figures a side, or is it a battle set with many hundreds a side? This can lead to different basing requirements, but with a little thought and planning figures can be based for both systems.

Let's take the figures of my first unit as an example. The first set of rules I'm going to use will be Lion Rampant. This is a skirmish style set of rules and I will have a force of about 40 figures when I'm finished. The rules recommend that your figures are based individually and formed into a clump around the command figure. Notice that I said recommend. Most modern sets of rules are normally very flexible with basing requirements, and as long as you and your opponent agree most figure basing can be accommodated. I decided to base my figures on 20mm square bases. This allows my to move as a clump for more skirmish style games, but also allows me to rank up for bigger games. Also by using a movement tray when ranked up it aids in movement.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Zouaves on parade.

Five units of Zouaves now completed and ready for battle.

The Louisiana Tigers carrying the state flag.

The 146th New York Volunteers (Garrard's Tigers)

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Returning to the Hobby - Part Six

The same friend who had bought me the Saga rule set and battle boards, led me into Dark Age war gaming described in an earlier post. He also purchased for me three boxes of Perry Miniatures War of the Roses figures as well as some metal leaders and wagons. The three boxes consisted of Mounted Knights, Light Cavalry and a box of Infantry. He knew I was considering the era and of course by presenting me with these lovely figures, gently nudged me down the road to Medieval war gaming too.

The first box tackled was the infantry, it allowed for the building of three units for Lion Rampant. Two units of archers and one of Bill men, each unit being 12 men strong. The box also contained four command figures in full armour. You can see some of the contents behind the box.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Neil's Project Page: The Holy Land- part 1

The Holy Land - part 1

(Ed. Note: Neil, long time blogger and participant of our PAINT & CHATS, has volunteered to write up a series of articles - Neil's Project Page - where he describes how he goes about tackling new miniatures projects. Everything from force and miniatures selection, basing, and painting, along with all the considerations involved. Here is part one where Neil goes in to the details of his newest project - The Holy Land.)

Starting a new project can be a daunting prospect and also an expensive one. So in the following weeks and months I thought I would go through my projects as I start them (and hopefully) finish them, and share some of my research and the choices I make.

My first project actually happened by chance. The last night at the club I had my first game of Lion Rampant. I had a fun game and agreed to take part in the campaign set in the Holy land in the new year. So here we have 2 ingredients to start our project. 1 a game system I enjoyed, and 2 a campaign setting that sparked my interest. These I believe are the most important points for this project. The rest as we shall see adds more value and sustainability.

So we had a start. Next we needed some miniatures. These came from one of my favourite miniature company's Gripping Beast.