Monday, December 5, 2016

Mounted Crossbowmen II

The second trio of Casting Room Miniatures' mounted crossbowmen trot off the painting desk.  As mentioned in an earlier post, this was my first tranche of Casting Room Miniatures' figures.  My impression of the sculpting is mixed depending upon the range and figure but I find these horsemen quite acceptable.  With a Christmas sale in effect until DEC 20, a second order is on its way to my casa.  In my Christmas order will be found a variety of Normans for the Reconquista project.  They look good in the photos.  
While the anatomical sculpting on the men is odd in places, their mounts are well executed.  These horses fit well with the horses from Foundry's Early 16th Century Renaissance range.  With the project growing by 40 horse and 60 foot figures in 2016, the collection is seeking its first test of battle on the game table. 
Until that time of battle, a fifth stand of mounted Gendarmes is ready to depart the painting desk and a 40+ pike block awaits in the queue.  Looking at the pile of 40+ blackened pikemen almost overwhelms my desire to begin.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Samurai Battles - Return to the Field!

“Time – the one asset none of us are ever gonna get more of.” – Gary Vaynerchuk

In a reminder of just how quickly time can slip away, Friday night's scheduled Samurai Battles' games had me searching through the archives to see when the collection was last out on the gaming table.  The answer?  January 2014!  Nearly three years ago.  Astounding, really.  
Enough reflection.  On to the night's activities.

With Jake in town for the weekend, we set up an evening of Commands & Colors: Samurai Battles.  Jake brought a portion of his collection and I fielded mine.  Each would command his own troops on the march towards glory.  Mano-a-Mano, so to speak.  After a quick bite to eat, we sat down to the kitchen table, unrolled the game mat, deployed figures, and got to work.

Since time between our last outing was so far in the past, we began where we started several years ago.  That is, with the Fourth Battle of Kawanakajima (1561).  While Rules Rust was evident at the beginning, that was quickly overcome and we dug in for battle.

Games played were the first three phases of the battle.  Jake took command of the Takeda Army while I took charge of the Uesugi Forces.  Four, pleasurable games were played in about three hours with victory falling to Uesugi Clan three out of four games.

Game 1: Fourth Kawanakajima Phase 1
Uesugi forces jump out to a very quick start and dominate the game using a center rapid deployment of their Samurai cavalry.  Takeda heavies never make it into the battle line to engage.  Uesugi wins five banner to zero.
Phase 1: At Start
Phase 1: Conclusion with Uesugi controlling the center
Game 2: Fourth Kawanakajima Phase 2
Uesugi forces apply pressure early.  A fortunate play of cards allows Uesugi to hit hard early and often.  Uesugi wins the battle 5-2.

Phase 2: At Start
Phase 2: At Start
Game 3: Fourth Kawanakajima Phase 3
Uesugi forces launch a quick and devastating attack against the Takeda command tent with the Samurai horse to cripple the spirit of the Takeda clan.  Takeda concedes game and it is reset for a redo.  Thus far, the first three games have not been close and Jake muses how he once thought the system was fun and challenging for both!   "Borg must hate Takeda" was heard in table conversation.
Phase 3: At Start
Game 4: Fourth Kawanakajima Phase 3
In a Phase 3 rematch, the most closely contested battle of the night unfolded.  With impressive use of the Takeda Samurai cavalry on the Takeda right and solid work on the left, Takeda jumps out to a 4-0 lead.  Uesugi, not giving in, picks off a Takeda Samurai foot and leader to make the game 4-2.  Takeda takes out one more unit to bring him within one banner of victory.  Current score is 5-2 Takeda.  Showing some resilience, Uesugi attacks with a combination of Samurai foot and horse to rip open the Takeda center and drive the enemy back to the river.  Banner count 5-5.  With one more impulse, the Takeda horse having already accomplished much on the Takeda right, overruns a severely depleted Uesugi foot to claim victory 6-5.  While the first three games were not close, the last battle was a real nail-biter and came down to the wire.

A very enjoyable evening at the game table with a collection that has been gathering dust from inactivity for three years.  Great to see the forces out on the table and arrayed for battle after such a long absence.  Hopefully, their next outing will not take three years to materialize!  Jake, thanks for the games!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Assyrian Chariot #4 Rehab

The Assyrian chariot rehabilitation project continues with chariot #4 rolling off the painting desk.  Like the other three chariots before, the yoke needed to be removed, flipped and then reattached to the tongue.  One wheel required reaffixing to the axle and an arm or two needed reattachment.  After staining and a new base, voila! 
The Foundry Assyrian chariots are a wonder and the foot figures are just as excellent.  Having moved these chariots from the To Do One Day pile over to the To Do Now pile, has me motivated to begin an Assyrian Army project with a sense of purpose.  Before I was not quite sure what would become of the box of broken chariots.  Would they languish in a box forevermore?  No!  Even though some would suggest I possess way too many projects, a Biblical project is not one of them.  With such a growing core of nice chariots, it would be shame not to use these models as a nucleus for an army or two.  More Foundry Assyrian lead is winding its way to the house.   
   Four chariots down, five to go.

Monday, November 28, 2016

AB French Ligne Infantry in Bicorne

After seeing few new recruits for the 1799 project muster off the desk since mid-summer and with thoughts of gaming Montebello in my head, painting returns to the 1799 project.  Off the painting desk, this time, are 26 18mm AB figures to muster two battalions.  
Having examined Orders of Battle for the Battle of Montebello in 1800, I found Austrian light infantry and grenz were needed.  So, what do I put into the painting queue?  Two battalions of French Ligne infantry destined for the 100th Demi-Brigade (regiment).  Yeah, I know.
While I could have pulled Austrian grenz and light infantry from my 1809 Napoleonic project, I really wanted to field the early light infantry and grenz.  A bit picky but I did want the earlier uniform representation and AB figures.  Anyway, one can always use more French ligne, right?  I thought so. 
With the 1800 battle of Montebello delayed until I can field the missing links, progress is being made on the 1859 version of the battle.  The terrain has been placed to cover the scope of both the 1800 and 1859 battles.  While both battles included the town of Montebello, the 1800 battle featured Montebello as a western French objective and the 1859 battle featured Montebello as an eastern French objective.  The battlefield expansion to include both battles, opens up the scope of each.  Possibly confusing now but all will be made more clear when the battlefield is displayed.  

For now, back to the painting desk.  A few units are in queue and awaiting their turn in the photo booth too.   

Friday, November 25, 2016

28mm ACW Project Brigade Review

Here is my little Federal brigade comprising three foot regiments, four gun sections, and more than its fair share of commanders.  The brigade is ready for action!
Infantry and one command stand are Sash & Saber.  Guns, crew and two command stands are Old Glory.  Left in The Lead Pile are a handful of infantry, not enough to field a fourth regiment, and an Old Glory Federal camp scene.  The latter was picked up as an Old Glory Army Card bonus from several years ago.  To paraphrase Walter Brennan, "One of these days I'm gonna climb that mountain."  The Lead Mountain, that is.

Four Federal gun sections
140th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment
10th New York National Zouaves
114th Pennsylvania Rgt Collis' Zouaves

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

10th NY National Zouaves

The third regiment in my 28mm Federal brigade marches off from the painting desk.  That regiment is the 10th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment or the National Guard Zouaves.
Figures are the last of the Sash & Saber Zouaves I picked up years ago.  While the sculpting is generally quite good on Sash & Saber figures, I found many of these Zouaves to have a number of misshapen faces.  No matter, from eye to table distance these ugly mugs will not be noticed.
With their colorful and flamboyant uniform, these recruits will brighten up the typically dreary ACW battlefield.  Having two Zouave regiments in my brigade, they may not find glory on the battlefield but will look smart trying!
With three infantry regiments and four guns in the brigade, I think it time to pull all of the troops out for a parade review.  That parade review will be coming up soon. 

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Assyrian Chariot #3 Rehab

Chariot #3 of nine goes in for a bit of rework.  Like chariots #1 and #2 before, yoke needed to be removed and flipped and one wheel needed reaffixing.  Riders needed to be resituated in their cab.Finally, some minor paint touch-ups before staining and mounting on a new base.

As I work through each of the chariots, visions of fielding these machines on the gaming table are becoming more frequent.  Spread out onto the desk are Army Lists to help in solidifying a force to build.  With enough chariots to field four Impetvs-sized BMUs of two chariots each, these four chariot elements are sufficient to complete two armies under Basic Impetvs

Three down, six to go.  Oh, and an order to Foundry is off in a call for reinforcements.
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