Thursday, 10 May 2018

More Austerlitz Russian preparations...and the French make a quick appearance.

Preparation for a nice Divisional Command stand - all Elite Miniatures

The project continues on as the Russians part of the endeavours now starts to come to a conclusion.

Another skirmisher base in preparation

Some bicorne wearing French artillerists from Elite Miniaturesption

Monday, 7 May 2018

Preparations for Mont St. Jean and Quatre Bras

The Prince of Orange with his entourage ready for command at Quatre Bras

The next few weeks will see two games being played upstairs in the wargames room at home.

They both will General D'Armee Napoleonic games as they are certainly the rules of choice for my battles since their release.

They also will both be based within the 1815 campaign as the very clever Dave Brown prepares to release, through Reiswitz Publishing, a PDF of six battles of the Hundred Days.  How wonderful.

For both battles there will be a fair amount of both British and Allied troops, all of which I have already painted and based through my gaming with the excellent General De Brigade in the past.  However anyone who has played GdA knows that the use of ADC's and skirmishers is an important aspect of the rules. 

Belgian Flank companies in skirmisher bases

Another photo in far better morning light.  What a difference it makes.

Some Militia skirmishers

Another angle with another light source/

My Dutch-Belgian Brigade which will be that of Byljandt did not have any skirmishers at all so a quick order to Perry Miniatures and a few rushed licks of paint and they will now have some if required.

This Prince of Orange stand actually appears in Dave's General De Brigade volume - nice command set.

A view the French hope to see during the Quatre Bras re-fight

So the first will be Mont St. Jean hopefully commencing this weekend.

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Smolensk Grenadier Battalion on the Workbench

Elite Miniatures Russian Grenadiers ready for a good bayonet charge!

It has been quite hectic work wise lately and though I have still found some time to spend an hour or so at the painting desk, it has proved difficult to post anything on the blog.

However rest assured that I have not been slack in my efforts and the ongoing 1805-07 project, and specifically the Russian element of it, has continued to progress.

The Smolensk Regiment, of which I had last month completed the one Musketeer battalion, has been the focus of my attention.  These were part of Miladoravich's IV Column and fought strongly with the Austrian elements against the French General Van Damme around the surrounds of the Pratzen.

I used to dislike that particular Elite Miniatures horse pose as it was always difficult to get to stay in position due to
the weight all being in its front.  It would topple over often on the base after I thought I had secured it successfully. 
However I have grown to really like using it to depict the mounted Colonel of a foot battalion leaning forward in
the saddle and urging his men forward at the double to meet the enemy with some cold steel.

The chaos in technicolour which is my painting desk!

A not so good photo of a newly painted brigade command stand

Two more new command stands once again proving that my photographic skills...or lack at the
very least wonderfully consistent!

The figure in the white uniform is absolutely inspired by Prince Andrei Nikolayevich Bolkonsky one of the
main characters of Tolstoys "War and Peace".

Another view of my out of focus Brigade Commander

Next will be the final basing of this battalion, the last remaining bits and pieces of the two Russian batteries and then another command stand.

Getting there slowly.

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Russian 1805 Smolensk Musketeer Battalion nearing completion

With standards in hand the Smolensk Regiment looks quite the part.

A blast of work related activity and some additional business trips recently have made posting new entries a bit of a tough task.  However over a few hours on the weekend I managed to 99% complete the final details on a battalion that was painted for me many years ago by Nathan at Elite Miniatures Australia.

I have now started to work on the next formations of the Russian contingent and that starts with the Smolensk Musketeer Battalion and its attached Grenadier Battalion.  As mentioned above, thee figures have been awaiting some re-basing for a while.  I very much love Nathans style of painting and have desperately tried to replicate it for addition units within my force, never with the total satisfaction and success that I would like.  He is an excellent and stylish painter of these wonderful figures.

A few detailed shots of the stands as they appear in line formation.

The early ranges by Peter Moreby of the Russians, French, Austrians and Prussians are favourites of mine.

I do particularly like the infantryman in fatigue cap.

Clan and crisp painting from Nathan

Quite a bit of activity on the workbench behind this particular unit as you can see

More of Nathans work.  I am trying to paint the Officer figure as an exact copy to add to a Cavalry Brigade
Commanders base for General D'Armee

This will need a coat of varnish and then the Grenadier battalion from the same regiment will be completed over the next week or so.  I now need to get these lads on the table or a small game and see how they fight as the rest of the 1805-07 project continues.

Poorly lit photo however it does show the battalion and all its Russian determination!!

I am currently sorting through the composition of a few Russian Command stands as well as preparing to send of a fair few Elite Miniatures Austrians away to be painted for me as my current time at the painting table is very much tightening as work loads start to increase once again.

Until next time.

Monday, 9 April 2018

General Craufurd from Front Rank

"Black Bob" Craufurd signals the general advance of his division!

I was pottering around some old photographs, or should I say digital images, and came across this shot of a command stand I put together some years ago that had not been used.  I quite like how the sun hits the entire scene and highlights the painting and quality of these excellent sculpts. 

These figures are predominantly Front Rank however the chap from the 43rd is a wonderful Elite Miniatures officer and the hounds are from Eureka Miniatures.  The background building is in fact La Belle Alliance from the excellent and under-rated Hovels range.  If you haven't visited their site make sure you do as the buildings and terrain are remarkably great value for money even if, like me, you need to have them shipped to the antipodes!  As an added bonus both Dennis and Carol are a delight to deal with and to me, that always is the clincher!

Saturday, 7 April 2018

A return to Battle Group Overlord

Reconnaissance and lead Allied  Command units attempt to gauge the terrain ahead
We have been playing a fair few Chain of Command rules in recent years and all of us find them enormous fun.  A great set of skirmish style rules which also allows for larger combats and most importantly, they are able to be played at they club on a Wednesday night to a conclusion with a box full of figures.

What more could you ask for?

Well a few of the members were seeking to use a few more of the models and figures we had all accumulated in the past years when we were still playing Kampfgruppe Normandy, the wonderful rules from Warwick Kinrade which we all absolutely adored at the time.

Then the closing down of Warhammer Historical stuffed everything up.. Soon after Battle Group Kursk was published.  However, though we all bought the rules, we certainly ventured into other rules and other periods.

Battle Group sat collecting dust on the shelves.

Until recently.  Martin and Phil had been chatting for a while about getting the game moving again so that the actual Battle Groups we had painted up and modelled could be used again in full.  Martin and I decided to be the first cabs off the rank and play a game at his place set in 1944 France.

Great job by Martin setting up a very fine looking table

Wonderful Foreground buildings

So we decided on a 500 points a side battle between US Airborne troops and German defenders.  One of the great aspects of the Battle Group rules is the options to have support sections such as armour, engineers etc. to assist.  It makes for a fun game with plenty of diverse looking models on the table.

The first Airborne squad and supports makes its way through the farmyard

Whilst some German Recce vehicles make their way down the road. A Pak40 in tow looks to position. 

A us 57mm AT gun under tow also arrives to offer allied fire support

Great job by Martin on the cobble stones

The German Anti-tank gun deploys right on one of the objective markers supported by some of the
Fatherlands finest remaining troops!

For a brief moment the M8 Greyhound thinks its done or.  Two shots miss from the anti-tank gun.  He won't
offer a second chance again so soon into this particular engagement.

Whilst the US troops continue their surge towards the orchard and its protective stone walls

The Airborne support 57mm sets up and takes a shot at a recently arrived German Marder.  We may have  mucked
up the visibility rules by the way but it was the same for both sides.

BANG!  Success for the allies and disappointment for our German friends.

Another German squad arrives to give support and set up near the hedges

Whilst a Forward Observer team and squad arrives at their objective point.

The Pak40 turns to see if it can find some attractive targets.

Whilst another US Airborne squad arrives on the other side of the table to support...

...some Shermans looking for a fight...against weaker and tiny armoured German vehicles.

Certainly not against some Panzer IV's that's for sure.

US mortar fire manages to pin and suppress the German gun.

The Shermans advance fails to even scare the local cows!

However this M10 Wolverine may attract a few more panicked Teutonic stares.

German off-table artillery strikes land perilously close to the advancing allied armour but fail to
deliver a knock out blow to any of the armoured assets.

Scrambling MMG teams

As well as some troopers carrying Bazooka looking to deploy.

German Battle Group High Command looks on with a fair degree of trepidation

The Sherman's hold up and await some infantry support in case their may be some surprises lurking ahead

Guess what?

A shot from a Mk IV forces this crew to run for their lives

It was at this stage where the allies luck really kicked in.  Outgunned by the German armour, the allies attempted to close the distance between themselves and their deadly opponents.  Martin, playing the Germans, was hopeless in his potting and observation attempts and failed on numerous occasions to get the correct dice to blow the Sherman's to kingdom come.

With the Pak40 pinned and unable to fire, the road opens up for the speedy M8 Greyhound
and Wolverine to take a match winning position.

Lovely model from Artizan Designs

Beautiful scratch built garden from young Martin.  Well done mate!

The German 222 goes up in flames and the end is nigh.

A German MG42 team try and stem the tide but it is too little too late.

At this point the morale and will to resist from the German defenders fell away and the battle was won by the US Airborne troops.  A great fun game and one which I am sure we will look to play again soon.

Thanks to Martin for hosting the game in fine style as always.  So much of the terrain was either scratch built by him, including the roads, gardens, hedgerows etc.  Great looking tables are always a joy to play on and this was as good as any.