Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Big Muddy's Games Day After Action Review for 03/15/08

After Action Review for Blitzkrieg Commander's Late War, East Front Game at Big Muddy’s Games Day at AnImagination on 03/15/08

AnImagination is a local hobby shop in south St. Louis County and were very kind enough to allow Big Muddy Historical Gaming Alliance to run several games there on 3/15. There were several games going on during the afternoon session: Mark’s 25mm War of 1812; Adam’s 1/300th WW2 Air War over the Pacific; and Steve’s (Combat Colours) 10mm Blitzkrieg Commander’s Late War East Front. In the evening session, there were the following games: Mark’s 25mm War of 1812 continuing from the afternoon session; Adam’s General Quarters III 1/2400th WWII naval game; and finally Steve’s 1/144th Wings of War WWI dogfighting.

Do to my involvement in Steve’s games; I only got pictures of the 10mm BKC game. The game was set up by Steve using his 10mm miniatures and terrain. I am not sure of the actual forces used, but this is a rough estimate here:

Soviets (Attacking) [Player’s name is after the command stand]

CO – 1 [Trevor was the overall Soviet Commander]
HQ – 2 [The Soviet’s right flank was Jon and the left flank was Timmy!]
Infantry – 8
T-34/76 – 5
SU-122 – 4
JS-2 – 2
M4 (76mm) – 6

Germans (Defending):

CO – 1 [Yours truly! And this is one of those very rare moments in history that I game a German! And especially the overall German Commander!]
HQ – 2 [Blake is commanding the German’s left flank and OJ (No, not the former football star!) is commanding the right flank]
Marders – 2
Infantry – 8
Panzer IV – 3
Sdkfz 251/1 – 1
Mobile Flak wagon – 1
Jadgpanthers (reinforcements) – 2

There were several special rules that applied in this scenario. The two German Marders started out of ammo and where at the ammo dump. With a certain roll, a Marder would be loaded up and ready to fight. When the German reinforcements arrived a similar thing would happen, but more on that later.

The Soviets had three objectives: 1) Seize the ammo dump; 2) Seize the fuel dump; and 3) Seize the railroad depot

The follow is the photo of the table with the Soviets starting on the left and the German starting in the center and to the right. The Soviets still have not divided up their commands and where they will start. The Germans are in their positions with the Panzer Grenadier force to south (far table edge at the village there. This was OJ’s command. Blake started with the troops at the ammo dump (almost the middle of the table.) I was controlling the infantry in the railroad depot and the building next to that.

This picture is of the Soviet players (I sort of forgot to take one of the German players…) From left to right: Jon, Trevor, Steve (the Game Master), and Timmy!

First Turn:

Soviets act first – things start off slowly for the Soviets with very unlucky command rolls right off the bat! Basically, the Soviets appear to have opted for a two prong attack with Jon and Trevor starting off on the Soviet’s right flank with the bulk of the command, except for the 6 M4 (76mm). Those tanks were commanded by Timmy! on the left prong attack.

Just a note for the picture, the counters on the tanks represent infantry riding on the tanks, where the infantry stands behind the tanks is just that.

Germans – Only one Marder finish loading ammo and bee lines it back to the orchard just west of the ammo dump.

The Panzer Grenadiers command gets on the move and loads up but only gets one move starting down the road towards the main village.

Second Turn:

Soviets – The Soviets get some command rolls on the right flank and starts down the road towards the ammo dump. They luck out and catch the one Marder still loading.

A short bit later there is a burning Marder…first blood goes to the Soviets!

The left flank is still sitting pretty on the hill…maybe Timmy! thinks that the Soviet commander wants him to wait several turns before advancing…or maybe he is not having any luck rolling those Flames of War’s Soviet icon dice!...Is anyone else sensing a Foreshadowing comment here!

Germans – Once again, OJ drives up his column and deploys his Panzer IV’s in the Orchard as Blake’s surviving Marder starts shooting Soviet. No hits, but now the Soviets are aware that he can hit them.

Third Turn:

Soviets – The right flank breaks into two different prongs – the center which makes a drive towards the Germans in the orchard and the far right flank is following the rail road tracks towards the depot. Jon maintains control of the right flank with three T-34/76’s and three infantry. Trevor steps up and leads the center with the bulk of force that made the right flank prior to Jon’s splitting off. The center two T-34/76’s push forward and stop in the plowed fields just east of the orchards. The SU-122’s follow up after them, but the JS-2’s don’t make much of an advance. The left flank sits idly by as the troops enjoy the view from the hill top…Timmy! failed his command roll again!

Germans – The Germans sit tight in the main village and orchard and trade shots with the Soviets. The Marder suppresses one of the T-34’s and the Pz IV’s forces the suppressed T-34 to be knocked out.

Fourth Turn:

Soviets – The Soviets center advanced the SU-122’s to the edge of the field and start adding their guns into the fire fight. They suppress one of the Pz IV’s and the German infantry in the building next to the orchard. Their right flank advances to be next to the building just west of the railroad depot. But they still have not spotted the German infantry in the building. The left flank is still just frolicking on top of the hill…Timmy! fails yet another command roll! His Political Officer is starting to write notes in his pocket book when he next reports to his officer in Division about why the tanks had not been advancing.

Germans – This was a good turn for the Germans! Another T-34 is knocked out and two SU-122’s are damaged, but only one is suppressed in the center. On the German left flank the German infantry in the building use their initiative to fire a panzerfaust into the one T-34 that present it flank to it and suppresses it. Then they finish the T-34 off with another panzerfaust with a command roll. I then charged my infantry out of the building to try close combat with the Soviet infantry that was advancing behind the knocked out T-34. I lose the combat and fall back to the center of town. I then moved the flakwagon out into the open and got one shot off at a SU-122, but it did not do anything. I failed my roll to get the flakwagon to move back to be out of line of sight. Also the two Jadgpanthers in reserve show up! But, they only have two turns of fuel! But I have the option to sent them to the fuel dump and get fuel. So seeing how Timmy! advance is still on the hill, Trevor’s center is bogged down into gun fight, which we are getting the better of them, and Jon’s right flank is only two tanks and some dismounted infantry, I felt that I could safely get a shot of getting fuel for the Jadgpanthers. So that is where they drove to.

Fifth Turn:

Soviets – Steve started feeling bad for Timmy!, so he allowed Timmy! to use the Flames of War Desert Rats icon dice instead of the Soviet dice. All of sudden, Timmy! comes flying down the hill and advancing like a wild man! Again, the Political Officer is seen writing something in his little red book about snide comments made about the Glorious Soviet Dice. But the left flank does not get far enough to be where they should be had they been, but a least they are off the hill. The center stalls into a gun battle, but they can’t seem to push the Germans out of the orchard or the building. But they do finally knock out the Marder in the orchard in addition to the flakwagon and the infantry in the building next to the orchard. The right flank leaves their infantry behind and the two T-34’s race down the railroad tracks past the depot and tries to swing around to make a dash for the fuel dump, but they fail their command roll.

Germans – Hmmm…Timmy! is on the move, this changes things! Fortunately, I roll well enough that the Jadgpanthers are fuelled up and ready to roll. One backs down the road and prepares to shoot anything that comes around the railroad depot or pushes past the burning flakwagon. But it failed to make a command roll to shoot at the lead T-34 as it comes around the railroad depot. Even the two German infantry stands in the railroad depot failed to get a good hit on the T-34’s with their panzerfaust.

Sixth Turn (only played out the Soviet phased due to time running out for the afternoon session):

Soviets – Timmy! using the FOW Desert Rats dice again succeeds in finally rolling around the woods and threaten the Germans rear in the orchards, but he fails to get the command roll to get any shots off at the rear of the Pz IV’s. Again, the Political Officer makes notes about the refusal to use Soviet dice! Both the center and the right flank fail to get going.

Germans – Due to time restrictions, the Germans do not have their final turn.

Final Comments:

Overall, I think every one had a good time. Soviets came fairly close to pulling off a Minor Victory and if given one more complete turn, they might have done it depending on how well their command rolls would have gone and how well the Germans shooting would had gone on the final turn. But I am pretty sure that regardless how the next turn would have gone, the Soviets had much more equipment than the Germans and we would had to reformed to face the threat of the M4(76mm) and the sure to come arrival of the JS-2’s which would cost us the orchards and probably the eastern side of the main village and would have forced us to deploy in the open fields. At that point, we would have to need to roll some hot dice to stop the Soviets.

The Soviets total lost was three T-34/76’s and one SU-122. The Germans total lost was two Marders, a flakwagon, and an infantry stand.

After Action Review of the Wings of War games:

I did not take any pictures of either of the two Wings of War games.

After the BKC game and getting everything packed, we played two games of Wings of War using the 1/144th planes from Wings of War and from the new F-Toy’s biplane collect. The first game was two Camels (Pat flying Ellwood, and Blake flying the Belgium’s ace, Olieslagers) vs. three Albatros (Steve flying the “Red Baron’s” Albatros from F-Toys, Trevor flying Wolff’s Albatros, also from F-Toys, and me flying Udet’s Albatros…What me playing a German in two games in row?…Where’s is Ripley’s Believe it or Not!?) The game saw my plane take a fuel explosion pretty early in the game to Blake’s shooting. Then there was a beautiful flying Vee formation of a Camel and two Albratos for the soldiers in the trenches. This was followed by Trevor being shot down by Blake and several turns later to see the “Red Baron” getting shot down by the Belgium Ace! There was much joking about the Belgium Air Force and waffles at this time.

The second game of Wings of War sees Blake deciding that three kills in one game is too much of a good thing as decides not to fly in the second game. So this game we see Steve flying the “Red Baron’s” Albatros and Pat flying the “Red Baron’s” Dr.I...HUH?!?!? Will the real “Red Baron” please stand up and deliver my pizza! Trevor decides to flying the Belgium Camel and see if the plane is good luck or not, and I fly my tried and true, Eddie Rickenbacker’s SPAD XIII. Well, the Belgium shot down the Albatros and damaged the Dr. I quite a bit, but I was able to get the final kill on the Dr.I in one of my “slash and run” passes. So I was able to stop the Belgium Air Force from having a clear sweep of all of the kills in the games. Steve is going to bury the Belgium Camel and we will probably never see it again in a game, except if he is flying it.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

28mm Pulp or Victorian or Both!!!

The first two pictures were painted by Combat Colours and the last two were by me.
The Secret Order of the Golden Dawn! All except the center figure are from Eureka. The center Aleister Crowley figure is from Grenadier, if I remember correctly.
"Don't eat the yellow snow!" The figure to the left is from West Wind and the one to the right is from RAFM.

28mm Spanish American War

The following is again miniatures painted by Combat Colours for my 28mm Spanish American War Personalities. At one time I thought of playing the Spanish American War in 28mm, but never got around to it and now I don't have a desire to do it in 28mm. BUT...I love the Personalities sets that were put out by Old Glory. I hope to eventually have rest finished for display or possible Victorian gaming.
This first picture is of William Randolph Hearst, Lt. Col. Teddy Roosevelt on Little Texas, and Richard Harding Davis.

This is my all time favorite display piece, Period! My photography does it no justice. The figures are Stephen Crane sitting on the ground and Frederic Remington sitting on a barrel while painting "Charge of the Rough Riders at San Juan Hill."

28mm Victorians

The following is my Victorians or figures that I am using for Victorians. Everything was painted by Combat Colours, except for the three religious figures in the fourth picture. They were painted by me. I will comment between each set of pictures for the manufacturer.
All five of these are from Foundry and were special editions.
Yes, I know that the first three are actually for fantasy, but they are useful for being workers at the "Ten Bells" Pub. They are all from Reaper Miniatures. The next three are from Foundry and these are the ones that I painted.
The "Teddy" like figure is from Foundry and the Ned Kelly on a penny farthing bicycle is from Eureka Miniatures.
"Will the real 'Jack the Ripper' please step forward?"
I can't remember who made the first figure, but I think it was Ral Partha. The 2nd Jack is from West Wind. The news crier is from Foundry. Both the 3rd Jack and the 'Lizzie Borden' are from Grenadier.

28mm Gangs of New York Part 2

Well, I have been playing around with my camera and got some better shots of my Gangs of New York figures. They are still not the best pictures, but I am improving! Any please review my previous posting for the manufacturers. The first two pictures has miniatures painted by Combat Colours for me. The last three are of my work with a brush.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

28mm Gangs of New York

All right, I will put up some pictures...please forgive the pictures, see my previous post about my camera problems. These pictures do the miniatures absolutely no justice.

This is from my 28mm Gangs of New York project. I read several of the Herbert Asbury's "Gangs of" books before the movie was released in 2001. And since then, I have read all of Herbert Asbury's books and have read several more books on the Gangs and Riots of old New York. Excellent stuff!!!

The gangsters in the first three pictures were painted up by Combat Colours for me. They are a mix of West Wind's Gothic Horror line and Eureka's Victorian's Thugs. They are mostly painted in a nautical theme to represent the "Day Break Boys".
The following three pictures of my handy work at a paint brush. The first two pictures are of figures for the Municipal Police for New York City. They are from Bobby Jackson's B'hoys! line from The Virtual Armchair General.
This last picture has an interesting figure on the right, but I will come to that soon. The first figure is from Foundry's Darkest Africa line and is also for the "Day Break Boys." The middle figure is a fireman from Brigade Games' Victorian line. He is painted up to represent Engine No. 33, "The Black Joke", of the New York City's Volunteer Fire Companies. The third figure is from Foundry's Wild West line after some conversion to the head gear. The figure represents a "Bald Knobber" vigilante from south west Missouri, specifically from a mask from Christian County.