Sunday, September 28, 2014

Battle of Brienne AAR

We recently played the Battle of Brienne using Volley and Bayonet. The scenario is from the Volley and Bayonet Page
I used the early start option and the victory conditions that required the Russians to exit all of their divisions. Since the IX Corps starts at the opposite end of the table, the rest of the Russians must march to the rescue, and then the entire force retire in the face of the enemy. There were four players in the game, including one who had never played miniatures and one who had played only in the Wild West skirmish games. Both had a good time.

The historical battle, January 29, 1814, occurred when Napoleon attempted to cut off Blucher's army and destroy it. Two infantry corps and two cavalry corps are attempting to escape the trap.

The field of battle from the French entry point

The Russians have withdrawn into Brienne and formed a line with two divisions. The relief force is at the top of the photo and Guard cavalry engages some Cossacks.

The French attacked with their cavalry; it arrived on turn 1. A corps of French infantry arrived on turn three, and then two divisions of Young Guard arrived next. In a furious cavalry fight, the entire division of French Guard cavalry was destroyed! The Russian line anchored on Brienne held, throwing back attack after attack. Dusk, and then darkness meant that the French would not be able to catch and hold the Russians. The Russians win this one.

A fun, fast, three hour game. I want to try this again with different victory conditions.

Blucher's train attempts to make it off of the table.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Battle of Brienne Set Up

It has really been a long time since I've posted or even looked at other blogs. Work has been overwhelming and both me and my wife have been ill.  I've played in two games since March; a very low number for me, but today I am hosting the Battle of Brienne at my home. Russians vs French in early 1814. Should be fun.

I will be catching up in the next few weeks. 

Happy gaming!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Warhammer Wild West AAR

Several years ago I gave my son, Brady, the Warhammer Wild West rules as a gift. We didn't do anything with them until recently. A week ago, Brady, his friend, Michael, and I played a couple of learning games. Today we played it at our Clob. There were two 8 player games. Each took about two hours to play. 
These are the typical Warhammer style rules; roll to hit, roll to wound. Quick, simple, and fun.
In the second game, we squared off, fathers vs. sons. We older gentlemen won; barely.

Big Mike has three sets of the Cow Town play set. The size is perfect for 28mm.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

X Wing AAR

We played a couple of games of X Wing this past Sunday. Bob and Big Mike brought in their stuff; it was fun.
I really enjoy this system. We had 7 players in the second game and it went very well.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Battle of Lake Baikal AAR

The Red Fleet moves to attack

Last weekend we gathered and played my Lake Baikal scenario for the Russian Civil War. Our rules of choice are Red Actions from the Perfect Captain. This game had three gunboats and two armored trains, as well as three gun barges and four batteries firing from land. It was a completely different game than what we normally play; different and yet still fun.

One of the Czech Legion armored trains

The other Czech armored train
I plan to post the scenario soon. The premise is that two Czech Legion armored trains are moving through this area as they roll East. They are "escorted" by a brigade of Cossacks from the Siberian Provisional Government. A small infantry command garrisons the train station.
A group of gunboats are moving to attack, accompanied by a transport. The game begins and both sides fight to control the rails in this area.

The Red gunboats pull gun barges and screen the transport 

The Cossacks are pounded by the gunboats

This armored train begins to take hits

View from the hill behind the White position
I needed to have a large hill on the table. I wadded up newspapers and put my ground cloth over them. With a little more practice, I hope to be able to perfect this terrain method.

The gunboats clear the way for fire from the barges.

It was a very lopsided affair. The Whites did not put a single hit on a gunboat or a barge. The Reds managed to destroy all of the batteries, as well as both trains. The only positive for the Whites was the beating they gave the Red infantry and cavalry that landed from the transport.

A fun game, but the next one will be more traditional with infantry and cavalry roaming the table.

As a matter of fact, I'm working on a scenario for the Red attack on Kiev in early 1918.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Battle of Lake Baikal Scenario Notes

During the Russian Civil War, the shore and water of Lake Baikal was the scene of many skirmishes and battles. The best source that I have found is Jamie Bisher's "White Terror; Cossack Warlords in the Transbaikal." In case you haven't already heard me say it, this is an excellent book and highly recommended.
Our next club game will be an amalgamation of these fights. It will have armored trains, gunboats, Cossacks, and more.

The political/military factions in the game are:
Czech Legion
Siberian Provisional Government

The Czech Legion has two armored trains moving along the shoreline. The Czechs are moving East, eventually headed to Vladavostok. Although on the move, they will not flinch from engaging the Bolsheviks.
The Reds have three gunboats and a transport in the lake, moving to engage the Czechs.
The forces of the Siberian Provisional Government are represented by cavalry and a tchanka. Officially allies of the Czechs, they are reluctant to see them evacuate to the East.

There will also be shore batteries, artillery barges, and miscellaneous other detachments.

I will post an AAR after the game, as well as a full scenario.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Dresden AAR

 Is this a picture of the Austrian line advancing, or retreating? Read on to learn...

My friend, Jerry, was in town recently. He and I started playing Napoleonic miniatures in 1972. Our most recent game, in which my son, Brady, also played, was a scaled down version of Dresden. I've been wanting to play a Dresden scenario for a while, but hadn't been able to pull a big game together.
For this game I cut down the armies for both sides; one French player, me, one Russian player, Jerry, and Brady played the Austrians.
The game was set up as a desperate French defense. It worked well. 

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One of the French redoubts

Russian Cavalry division

Austrian Infantry division supported by a cavalry division

I seen confused by the scenario design. How am I supposed to hold off these overwhelming odds?

 This turned out to be one of the closest games in which I have played. On the final turn, my final die roll decided the game.
The Russians were on the Allied right, the Austrians were their left. Both wings closed in on me from turn one. I received a Guard division as reinforcements and threw them into an attack immediately against the Russians. The Austrians pushed their artillery up to point blank range and started an assault against one of my redoubts. While that position held out, I attempted to deal with the Russians.

The French Cavalry attempt to defeat the Russians.

The Allied line pushes forward

 After 12 turns of furious fighting, the Allies made it to the outskirts of Dresden. By this point, every infantry division on the table was exhausted or collapsed. Volley and Bayonet used exhaustion and collapse to show the effects of combat on divisions. Once a division reaches it's exhaustion level, normally 50% casualties, the owning player rolls for collapse. To avoid collapse, the player must roll higher on one D6 than the number of casualties suffered by that division during the current player turn. I failed my final collapse roll and my last division retreated.

On to the 1814 battles...