Friday, January 30, 2015

Grenadiers of Sardinia in 1859

Continuing on with the 15mm Risorgimento (1859) project, mustering from the painting desk are two battalions (24 figures) of the 1st Sardinian Grenadier Regiment.  Like the Sardinian line regiments, the grenadier regiments each field four battalions.  The two grenadier regiments were brigaded into the 1st Brigade of Durando's division during the short campaign.

The figures are from Lancashire Games.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Limbering Along

Maybe that should be "lumbering along?"  Anyway, off the painting desk this afternoon are three 15mm Austrian limbers each with teams of six.  These limbers exhaust the stockpile of Austrian limbers.  With the addition of these three limber teams, the project now can muster eight total limbers and teams.  I hope eight is enough.  The figures are Freikorps 15s.

Looking back at old blog posts, I find it hard to believe that it has been two years since the 1859 project has been out on the table for a review (DEC2012 1859 Review).  About 100 infantry and a number of limbers were added in 2014.  Progress has slowed since managing enough figures to refight the northern portion of Solferino (San Martino) in 2013.  That battle was a fun exercise and an interesting situation for both combatants.  I may try that again.  Perhaps, now, there are enough battalions to include the Sardinian outflanking maneuver on Madonna della Scoperta as part of the San Martino battle?

The Sardinian grenadier regiments were part of the Madonna della Scoperta action and two of these grenadier regiments are on the painting desk now.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Punic Wars BatRep - Impetvs

The guys gathered a couple of weeks back for an Impetvs game set during the Punic Wars.  This meeting gave me a chance to get the 28mm Punic Wars collection out onto the gaming table and introduce several of the guys to Impetvs.  Tabletop deployments also provided and opportunity to assess the state of the project.  Once set out, enough figures were available to provide four battle groups of almost identical size.  While I moderated, Jake and Kevin commanded the Carthaginians while Scott and Dylan took command of the Romans.  Of the four players, only Jake had any experience with Impetvs beforehand.

For the Carthaginians, Jake commanded the left wing and Kevin commanded the right.  For the Romans, Scott commanded the Roman left while Dylan took command of the right.  All commanders had a combination of foot and horse at their disposal.  "Disposal" is a good term to describe the carnage about to happen! 

The two combatants were arrayed in two battle lines with the Carthaginians on the left and the Romans on the right.
Ready for battle
Roman battle line with Roman cavalry
 already in disorder
Aggressive Carthaginian right advances
Numidian cavalry strike!
Against the odds, no fear here!
Celts advance behind skirmish line while
Roman cavalry on the far right
 charge into the Spanish cavalry.

Roman cavalry defeat the Spanish horse
 with heavy casualties to both.
Passing through the skirmish screen, the Celts
 charge into the Italian allies and push them back
Carthaginian heavy infantry in center advance
while the Roman line awaits...
Clash of shields!
With Roman cavalry success on the right,
 the Roman heavy foot on the right wing close
and the Libyan heavy foot are driven back
Battle line view from the left flank
Celtic cavalry charge and repulse
Cavalry locked in combat
Libyans counterattack, driving the Romans back
while Carthaginian heavy foot advance in the center
Battle rages all along the line
Celtic cavalry outlast the Roman cavalry
on the Roman left while the Celtic
 infantry advance.

With flank threatened, the Roman
 infantry wheels back.
Carthaginian heavies prepare for battle
With the Italians on the far right refusing,
Roman infantry in the center go on the attack.
A scrum develops in the Roman right-center.
Hacking in the center continues until the Roman
 right wing has reached its break point.
The Roman right begins to disengage as the Spanish
 outflank the position.
Slash and hack in the center as the Romans close in an
 attempt to stabilize the situation.
The race is on.  Romans attempt to destroy
the Carthaginian right before Spanish help arrives.
And the winner is...Rome!

Victory goes to Rome by the slightest of margins.  Casualties were heavy across the board.  Only Scott's Roman infantry on the left and a few of Jake's Spanish on the right maintain any offensive punch.  With the Carthaginian right in tatters, the carnage halts as the Carthaginians disengage.

The fight on the Roman right was much closer than it looked.  Jake's Spanish were nearing their break point as Dylan's Romans exceeded theirs.  I used the expedient of giving each Battle Group its own break point rather than an army break point.  The latter would have allowed the Roman right to continue fighting.  No matter; the game was hotly contested and we reached a conclusion within about three hours. I say, most participants were pleased with the outcome.

With no prior experience with Impetvs, Scott, Kevin, and Dylan picked up the mechanisms quickly and the game progressed at a rapid pace.
All agreed it was a fun contest and that Impetvs provides a very entertaining game.  All are looking forward to more such action.

For the 28mm Punic Wars project, I need to field more Roman legions and an elephant or two would be most useful.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Anatomy of a Project - Napoleonics in 28

Being out of town and away from the painting desk for the week, hobby activities are confined to reflection and reading.  No painting this week...

Given a recent influx of Napoleonic lead, I thought it might be a good time to take stock of the 28mm Napoleonic project.  What better way to see what I have accomplished than to deploy the forces on the table?  Often, it is easy to forget exactly what has mustered off the painting desk without holding an occasional Pass In Review.
First, a bit of project history.  This project first sparked to life in 2005 and then quickly went into a hiatus.  You see, this was a "buddy" project.  My friend had purchased several units of British and French Front Rank figures.  He wanted to field the French and asked me to buy out the British.  He envisioned painting these two forces for small Peninsular War actions.  Of course, I agreed.  Paint a few units and have some enjoyable games with a friend.  
After painting a few of the British infantry battalions, I noticed no progress on the French call up.  I continued to knock out a few units but after a few years, still no action on the French activation.      
Unfortunately, my friend became very sick and ended up selling his French figures to another buddy.  I finally came to the realization that if I planned to put this British force to work, they needed an opponent.  My solution?  Build a French force to oppose the British.   

Although never a priority project, after a little less than ten years, the project stands with two very playable forces.  This collection has actually seen combat on the gaming table in 2014.  Twice!

The British: 
At present, the British field 46 cavalry, 270 infantry, and 4 guns.

The French:
At present, the French field 50 cavalry, 240 infantry, and 4 guns.

What about the unpainted Napoleonic lead I mentioned at the top of the post? Well, here it is.  Two trays of unpainted lead.  Mostly Front Rank but other makes are in there too.  This alone would keep me busy for quite awhile.
For 2015, I want to make a dent in this Lead Pile.  Could I empty one of these boxes in 2015?  Unlikely, but worth a try.  

Sunday, January 18, 2015

State of the Painting Desk

Today's snapshots of the painting desk show, not surprisingly, a bit of variety.

One project seeing some attention is the 15mm 1859 Risorgimento project.  In work are two, 12 figure Sardinian grenadier battalions from Lancashire Games and three Austrian limbers and teams from Freikorps 15s.
1859 figures in work
Also on the desk are eight, Front Rank British hussars for the Peninsular War project.  Once I get a little further along with the horses, I will need to pick the regiment to field. 
Front Rank Napoleonic horse flesh
Finally, a second group of 15 Old Glory U.S. infantry for the Spanish-American War project await the brush.  The Americans for the SAW project are a great diversion in between painting the more complex uniforms for either SYW or Napoleonics.  Switching between scales and projects is an excellent deterrent to brush burn-out.
Old Glory SAW U.S. infantry
The last two weeks have witnessed a large influx of unpainted lead into The Lead Pile.  Some of this was not my fault.  No, really.  From the postman came about 100 Front Rank Napoleonics, several hundred Old Glory Italian Wars figures, about 100 TAG Italian Wars figures, handfuls of BTD Trojan War figures, close to 400 Lancashire figures for the 1859 project, and about 100 Foundry Italian Wars figures.  Hmm.  Looks to me like a couple of new projects are in the offing.

I was pondering the notion of having 2015 as the year of painting more than purchased.  Thankfully, that was not a New Years' resolution.  Clearly, I am already behind the eight ball.  I need some restraint...

Project Plans for 2015?  Well, that needs more careful thought.

Friday, January 16, 2015

SYW Prussian Dragoons - Secret Santa

Two squadrons Prussian Dragoon Regiment #1
As a first time participant in Ian's Secret Santa exchange, I was delighted to receive a battalion's worth of Prussian musketeers and two squadron equivalents of Prussian dragoons from my Secret Santa.  What I received is shown below:
Secret Santa gift
Great stuff, eh?  Not only did my Secret Santa choose a suitable period but also made the effort to divine the proper proportions in which I field each unit.  Outstanding effort!  That thoughtfulness is much appreciated.

As a small token of my gratitude to my benefactor, the 12 gift dragoons parade off from the painting desk not yet a month out from Christmas.  These two squadrons will form up with two sibling squadrons to bring Dragoon Regiment #1 up to four squadrons.

Thank you, Secret Santa!