Thursday, June 30, 2022

Friday, June 24, 2022

Rubbish Fire

 

Eurica seems to be a rather violent region.  Our pro-west friends in Wilhelmsland can't seem to catch a break.  Now the Rubishlandian's are getting sporty.



Approaching the North Border Road between Wilhelmsland and Rubishlandia. 

 

Hauptman Pieper, commander of B Troop, 1st Wilhelmsland Reconnaissance Battalion was feeling every bump of his Scimitar as it sped down the ‘Old North Road’ that would bring his Troop into contact with the East Border Road. Local farmers had reported sighting Rubishlandian armored vehicles on the Border.  His Troop was supposed to be on stand down having just finished a 3-week border deployment and he had tied on the mother of drunks last night at the Officers Club and was now suffering the mother of all hangovers.

 

With the recent Border incursion by Gardenstan still having everyone on edge, the Battalion’s other Scimitar Troop had been deployed to that Border while the two Scorpion Troops still on the Eastern Border were deemed too far away for an immediate response.  As he fought to keep down what little remained in his stomach his uneasiness was added to by the terrain along the Border.  The official Border was on the western edge of the ridgeline that ran the length of the border, affording the Rubishland forces excellent elevated positions for an ambush.  Wilhelmsland had a road that paralleled the border at a distance of about 800 meters.

 

He glanced at his map, and saw they were about 5 minutes from the intersection, he’d find out soon enough what was up.  With the increased rhetoric from Rubishlandia and the recent border incident with Gardenstan there had been some discussions of mining the area between the Border and the road but no decision had been made yet.  “I really hope this mission doesn’t go to shit” he muttered to himself.

 

At least he thought to himself his rules of engagement had been made clear, unlike the cluster that Hauptman Rosen had to deal with during the Gardenstan incursion.  


Unfortunately for the young Hauptman, his command had been under observation for the last minute as it moved closer to the border road.

 

*******************

 

Following is the classified after-action report. 

 

'X' marks the spot, a redacted map showing the general location of the initial contact.


Hauptmann Pieper's Scimitar Kompanie approaches the Intersection with the East Border Road.


The actual Border runs along the hill line, with the entirety of the hills being in Rubishlandia.  The Rubishandian vehicles on the hills are assumed to be in hull down position.


A closer view of the Scimitar Kompanie, while all 5 platoons are still operational.

I may need to consider a new camera if I'm going to do a lot in this scale.  They are tiny.
 

Pieper’s thoughts were interrupted when he heard Lt. Kurtz, his first platoon leader, screaming “Sager! Sager! Sager!” over the company net.  This was followed almost immediately by explosions off to Pieper’s left where 2nd Platoon was rounding the other side of a nearby hill.  As smoke began to rise over the hill Pieper thought he would be sick again as he shouted “Weapons Free!  Weapons Free! “Over the radio.  


View from the Rubishlandia side.  The BRDM-2AT on the right targeted the 2nd Platoon which can be seen in the distance with a smoke plume.  The BRDM2-AT on the left and the PT-76 targeted 1st platoon in the intersection of the road, and both missed.


'A Fist Full of TOWs 3' could also be called a fist full of dice.  When you roll for kills or suppression you roll a number of dice equal to the difference between the weapons penetration rating and the targets armor value.  In this case, the 4's and the 5 would have required a quality check, however, a 6 always destroys the target, so scratch one Platoon of Scimitar's.


A detached part of his mind was pleased with how his platoons sought out the sparse cover.  But he blanched when he saw first platoon under Lt. Kurtz charge headlong into the PT-76 position to his front.   Pieper was just making a report to his Command when the call of “Sager! Sager! Sager! Came over the radio net again.  This was quickly followed by explosions to his right as 3rd Platoon was engulfed in a fireball.  


The BRDM2-AT's behind the hill in the upper left score another hit, rolling several 6's and destroy another platoon of Scimitars.  Too bad only one officer in the Company seems to have paid attention in the tactics class in officers' basic.  

Pieper frantically called for artillery or air support, having allowed his command to be pinned down, and slowly being picked off as 4th and 5th platoon maneuvered to ‘safe’ positions behind the hill, (thereby ensuring they were unable to engage their tormentors due to the range).  Meanwhile 1st Platoon, maneuvered around the hill sheltering the PT-76 and opened fire on the thin side armor. Destroying the PT-76 unit.  


Since the Scimitar moved less than 1/2 its movement rate, they still were able to use their full Rate of Fire, in this case, 4 shots, 2 of which hit. (I forgot to add the penetration modifier for close range)



The Side armor on the PT76 is 1, the penetration on the 30mm of the Scimitar is 6, a difference of 5.  The Scimitar rolled 10 dice (5 for each hit).  A 4 or 5 causing a Quality Check, and any 6 resulting in the target being destroyed. In this case, the 6 does the deed.  (I seemed to roll a LOT of 6's, at least for me) 

With the loss of the PT-76 unit and a Platoon of Scorpions on their flank, the Rubishlandian forces began to withdraw.  As the BRDM2 on the far left Rubishlandian flank that had been spotting for the other vehicles began to withdraw they exposed themselves. The commander of the ambush hoped, I mean really, really, hoped that President for Life Sanford wouldn't be too upset about the loss of the PT-76 unit.  His order had been to, "Blow some vehicles up and make them scared."  Hopefully the loss of the Pt-76 unit would be over looked, or he may not still be alive when the war finally started.


Lt. Kurtz still running an adrenalin rush from his first combat attempted to engage the fleeing BRDM2, but it's speed allowed to reach the safety of the hillside before he could engage.  With a heavy heart Lt. Kurtz returned to the Wilhelmsland side of the border.


Scene at the end.  Lt. Kurtz is starting to head back to Wilhlemsland territory and the Rubishlandia attackers are retiring.



About 15 minutes later a Wilhelmsland Air Force Tornado overflew the area.  The Rubishlandian forces were long gone save for the burning wreckage of the PT-76 unit.  The remaining Scimitars of B Troop were rendering aid to their battered comrades.

Typical of the Air Force, too late to help.  


***********

A week later in Wilhelmsland a Military Tribunal would 'medically retiree' Hauptman Pieper, (court-martials look bad in the newspaper and upset the civilians at breakfast).  The same tribunal would recommend Lt. Kurtz for promotion for valor under fire.


A week later in Rubishlandia the Commander of the ambush and his immediate family were executed for disappointing President for Life Sanford.  Idi Sanford is not a forgiving man.

 

*********

 Well, that played fast.  I think I mostly got the rules right.  I just wanted a quick run through of the vehicle combat. Although it would have been nice to get to see the Quality Check in actual play.  As you would expect from a rule set titled A Fist Full of Tows, the anti-tank missiles are brutal in this game.  And as Hauptman Pieper learned, you've got to follow sound tactics.  


This incident goes beyond the minor border incursion last month by Gardenstan.  This time Wilhlemsland lives and equipment were lost.  What will they do?  What will the U.S. Regan administration let them do?  

What will Comrade General Secretary Gorbachev and the Supreme Soviet have to say about this - did they sanction it?


How much longer until I get distracted by the next 'Oooh Shinny' thing and forget all about this?


I hope everyone has a great, enjoyable, safe, summer.


So much lead, so little time

Thursday, June 23, 2022

WPBC Breaking News

 


AFTER ACTION REPORT TO FOLLOW

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Eurica Rhetoric Escalates

 


This one got a little wordy.  As always, click to enlarge.

Monday, June 6, 2022

The Earl Strikes Back

 Return with us now to those golden days of yesteryear for another installment of foolishness in the Outlandishian Chronicles


Count William had just sat down to enjoy a nice snack of cheese and wine when suddenly the flap to his tent was flung open.  “Billy!  Billy!, Errr… I mean Count William, Sire.  Our Scouts report that the Earl’s forces are on the march, and will be here within 2 hours” blustered his trusted lacky Curt the Lesser.  

 

“Calm yourself,” stated the Earl, “I’m sure Grand Captain Cuss-a-lot and his Cavalry will see them off again.  Send orders to muster the troop’s.  I’m surprised the old fraud was willing to try to attack again so soon.”

 

As the Earl’s forces approached the Count’s position, the Count couldn’t help feeling something seemed off with the Earl’s formation.  All of the Earl’s Cavalry was on his left flank which was odd as the Earl almost always deployed at least a token force of cavalry on each flank. “Maybe the old fraud is trying something new after 3 decades of failure,” muttered the Count as he noted that Grand Captain Cuss-a-lot seeing the deployment had gathered all of the Count’s Cavalry to oppose them.

 

The Count was still trying to determine just what the Earl was up to when suddenly all of the Earl’s Cavalry charged forward, careful to stay out of the firing arc of the Count’s artillery and then came to a sudden stop.  The Earl’s Cavalry then all dismounted walked forward several paces and turned their back to the Count’s Cavalry.  On command each trooper dropped his pantaloons, and bent over mooning the Count’s Cavalry.  They then calmly remounted and extended each arm up into the air, creating a fist, and slowly raising their middle finger began shouting taunts.

 

At this point the Count finally figure out what had been bothering him, none of the Earl’s Cavalry were wearing armor, or carrying lances, most didn’t even have swords. The Count was just calling over an orderly to take a dispatch to Grand Captain Cuss-a-lot when we saw his entire Cavalry command plod forward, while the Earl’s cavalry took off to the East at a 90 degree angle to the battle lines, with the Count’s entire Cavalry command in pursuit.

 

“Well, looks like we’ll have to do this the hard way.  I hope my Infantry remember how to use a spear”, sighed the Count as he picked up his helm and headed out to the lines.

 

Across the battle field, the Mercenary commander Bigus Dickus turned to his aid and said, “so far, so good.  My plan seems to be working.  Now if I can keep that dimwit the Earl from doing anything stupid, this should be a quick victory.”

 

And, the stage is set – let’s see if the Earl can actually win one for a change.

 

Initial deployment, The Earl's forces to the right, the Count's forces to the left
 

I'm not saying the Earl is desperate for a win, but... he was seen doing this


The Count won the initiative roll by 2, allowing the Earl to go first.  The Earl turned no usable cards.  The count turned one usable card, an Engine of War Reload, and promptly fired at the Earl’s new Pike Block at long range, winning by 9 and inflicting a 2 stand loss.

 

The second initiative was a tie, shuffle the decks and start over.  (as an aside I checked and the Earl’s next card would have been a move one command group.  Such is the fickle nature of the dice.

 

After shuffling the decks, the Count won the 3rd initiative by 2 again, allowing the Earl to move first.  Both sides failed to turn any cards that could be used.

 

The 4th initiative roll was… a tie.  Shuffle the Decks.  (again, I checked both decks and the Earl’s next card would have been a Move card – he apparently didn’t make proper sacrifice to the dice gods).

 

After shuffling the decks, again, the Count won by 5, letting the Earl go first.  The Earl finally turned a Move One Command Card, rolling up one move segment.  The Earl wisely opted to move the Command of Bigus Dickus which included the Pike Block.


The 6th initiative roll the Earl win by 6.  Finally, some action.  Predictably, the Earl failed to turn any useful cards.  The Count turned one useful card, an Engines of War reload, and fired at the Pike Block, inflicting a one stand loss.

 

The Count won the 7th initiative by 2, the Earl went first turning another Move 1 Command card, and rolled a one segment move.  He again opted to move the Command of Bigus Dickus.  The Count turned the Engines of War Reload card and fired at the advancing Pike Block for no effect.

 

The battlefield after 2 Move 1 Command cards (each for one move segment) by the Earl.  At this rate the winter snows will be falling before they two sides get into contact.

 

The Earl won the 8th initiative by 5, but neither side managed to turn any useful cards.

 

The 9th initiative saw the Earl finally turn a Move card with each of his commands rolling for 1 move segment.  Not to be out down, the Count also turned a Move card, opting to move part of his (left flank) command under his trusted lacky Curt The Lesser in an attempt to threaten the flank of the advancing Pike Block.

 

Finally, the Earl's right flank gets to move


 

The 10th initiative was won by the Count, who turned a Move card.  Opting to only move the command of Curt The Lesser, who rolled up two move segments, which put one of his spearmen units in contact with one of the Earl’s Swordsmen units.  The Earl’s Heavy Crossbowmen fired at the Spearmen as the advanced to no effect.  The Earl turned no useful cards.


The progress so far, looking West.  The Count's forces on the right, the Earl's on the left.
 

Close up view of the action, looking East this time, with better lighting.  The arrows to the front of the Crossbowmen indicated that the Earl's unit has fired and is unloaded.  The Earl appears to still be praying out there in no-mans-land.  Someone must have forgotten to move him.


 

The 11th initiative roll was… another tie (that’s 3 if you’re counting).  Shuffle the decks.

 

The Count won the 12th initiative roll by 5. He turned  a Move One Command card, rolling up two move segments which he used to initiate mele against the Earl’s Sword unit causing a one stand loss and forcing the swordsmen back 3” in a disordered status.  The Counts other unit of Spearmen moved forward one segment and then used their last move segment to manueuver turning 90 degrees to threaten the flank of the Earl’s other Sword unit.  And finally the Arquebusier of the command advanced one segment and used the last segment to maneuver 45 degree to get an angle on the Pike Block.   The Earl turned a missile reload card and his Heavy Crossbowmen dutifully reloaded and fired at the Count’s Spearmen inflicting a one stand loss on the Spearmen.

 

Action on the Count's left flank heats up.  The Count's unit of spearmen with their back to the camera have one stand loss, the camera angle is blocking the view of the rock to signify the stand loss.  The Earl's swordsmen at the back of the action have a one stand loss as signified by the rock and are disordered as signified by the pig.

 

The 13th initiative was won by the Count who turned an Engines of War Reload card and fired at the Pike Block, winning by 8 and inflicting a 2 stand loss.  The Pike Block is looking a little shaky and has lived up to my expectations of it being a cannon ball catcher.  The Earl failed to turn any useful cards.

 

The 14th initiative also failed to provide either side with any useful cards.

 

The 15th initiative was… a Tie!  (That’s number 4).  Shuffle the decks.

 

The Earl won the 16th initiative by 7 and went first.  The first Card he turned was a Move card with the command of Bigus Dickus rolling up one move segment.  The Heavy Crossbow and Longbowmen on the Earl’s left flank advanced, stopped and the crossbowmen fired at the Count’s Spearmen, missing completely.  The Longbowmen behind them loosed a volley of overhead fire but failed to cause any loss of stands. On the Earl’s right flank the command of Wrong-Way-Ray failed to move (he rolled a “1”).

 

The Earl's main assault is still not in contact.  This is taking entirely too long and probably won't end well.


The next card was a Missile Reload, surely this time the crossbow and longbowmen will score a hit… but sadly – not.  The Heavy Crossbow unit attached to Wrong-Way-Ray’s command reloaded and fired, inflicting a one stand loss on the Count’s Spearmen (They must have spent less time in the Tavern and more on the practice range).

 

Another Move Card for the Earl, with each of his commands getting one move segment.  Wrong-Way-Ray on the Earl’s right flank moves his fresh unit of Spearmen into contact with the Count’s battered and unformed spearmen but is unable to initiate melee having only one move segment available.  Meanwhile his other unit of Swordsmen side step to be on the flank of Count’s untouched Spearmen.  The Crossbowmen stand steady praying for another reload card. 



On the Earl’s left flank the Command of Bigus Dickus moves forwards with the battered Pikes closing on the Counts Guns, which fire as they close.  The die roll was a 12 to 1, the Pike units loss 2 more stands bringing them to 7 stands lost, and are destroyed (Pike stands are destroyed after 6 stand loss).  But they did their job as the rest of the units in the command are unharmed and closing into contact.  The Legions advance on the arqubusiers who fire, inflicting a 2 stand loss. The remaining legionnaires throw their pilum and fail to cause a loss.  The other unit of legionaries advance on the Counts Spearmen and launch their Pilum also failing to cause a hit.  A unit of the Earl’s Spearmen advance and make contact with the Counts Halberdiers, the Archers and Crossbowmen side step, and the remaining unit of the Earl’s Spearmen advance.

Carnage galore



And when the smoke from the Guns clears... all that is left of the Pike Block is a red smear and some dented shards of armor.

 

There were no other useful cards in the Earl’s initiative… a melee card sure would have been nice.

 

The Count’s 16th initiative started with a Move 1 Command card, and elected to move his right flank command, who rolled up 3 move segments!  The Count’s Spearmen move into the flank of the Earl’s Swordsmen for 1 stand loss.  The Arquebus maneuver 45 degrees, advance and fire on the flank of the legionnaire’s, causing no damage.  The Halberds advance into contact with the Heavy Crossbowmen  but have no movement segments left to initiate melee.

The Count’s next card is a Leadership card and he manages to rally one Spearmen unit.  

Next was a maneuver card which saw a unit of spearmen change facing.

This was followed by a Melee card – ouch!.  On the Count’s left flank The Halberd’s  melee the Crossbow unit inflicting a 2 stand loss, the crossbowmen roll was tripled, so they routed.  On the Count’s right flank the melee card is used by the Count’s Pike unit to melee the Spearmen to their front resulting in no lost stands, but the Spearmen were Disordered and remained in contact.

The next card turned was a Move Card.  Wrong-way-Ray on the Count’s left flank rolled up 2 move segments.  The Spearmen use one move segment to close with the Swordsmen and the second to initiate melee, winning by 7 they inflict a 2 stand loss, and rout (the Count’s roll doubled the Earl’s roll).  

On the Count’s right flank, Captain TBD also rolled up 2 move segments.  The Halberd’s already in contact initiate melee with the Earl’s Spearmen causing a one stand loss to the Spearmen who rout having already been disordered and losing a melee.  The Count’s Pike unit shifted to the right, and the Count’s Spearmen advance into the legion with one segment, and initiate melee with the second segment, the legion losses on a roll of 8 -3, taking a one stand loss, but since doubled they also rout.


Due to technical difficulties the photos from the above action were lost.  


At this point I called the battle as a win (again) for the Count.  The Earl was out of moral chips and had already paid the Count 3 extra chips.

 

The battlefield at the end.


The Earl's view of his right flank as his routing units come streaming back towards him.


A Vulture's eye view of the Earl's left flank.


Well, I think that pretty much does it for the Earl.  I'm not sure he'll recover from this loss. I'll have to consult the dice of woe and see what happens next.  The Count may be adding considerably to his holdings.  Honestly, the Earl couldn't fight his way out of a paper bag.  


It took forever for the Earl to close the distance.  Maybe next time I’ll start them 24” or 18” apart and give any artillery D4-1 long range shots to simulate the artillery softening up the opposition as the two sides close.  Thoughts?

I expected the Pike Block to be a cannonball magnet.  But I thought they’d close the distance faster and have enough stands left to make a credible threat, I don’t think the Earl rolled more than 1 move segment for any of his commands.  And the number of tie initiative rolls resulting in reshuffling the deck didn’t benefit the Earl either.


And I have a general question for the 2 or 3 people who may actually read this.  For the Battle Reports with the Piquet style rules, do you prefer to have it broken down into initiative sections, or would you just prefer a total narrative with no mention of initiative or cards?


So much lead, so little time.

 

 

Meanwhile, back in Eurica



 

Friday, May 27, 2022

 Spring is finally here, the temperatures are slowly rising.  The pool is open and the water is a balmy 64 degrees.  The grass seems to need to be mowed every 4 days, and there’s a long list of honey-do’s.  

But, I’ve still managed to get in a little painting.  

I’ve also been puttering around with some more terrain pieces.  Photos to follow if I ever finish them.  I don’t know if it’s a just a local thing but balsa wood seems to have become unobtainable.  

 

First up, the last of the reinforcements for the next round of foolishness in the Outlandishan Chronicles. Spoiler alert, the next battle will be a strictly infantry affair, if the clever plan of the Earl’s Mercenary Commander Bigus Dickus is successful in drawing away the Count’s cavalry.  Only the dice know…

These are Old Glory figures, Hungarian Spearmen if I recall correctly.  The paint job is just a “meh”.  I wasn’t really into it when I was working these guys, but from a gaming distance they’ll look ok.

 





Now I just need to clean all the junk off the gaming table so I can set up the next battle in the Outlandishian Chronicles.

 

And lastly, I found this in the lead pile.  The figure is from Ground Zero Games, Full Thrust line.  It’s a UNSC Battle Dreadnaught that I ordered something like 11 years ago?  I have at least one more of these I’ll get around to eventually when I start to focus on Project Z.

 


 


I hope everyone is enjoying the warmer weather.

 

So much lead, so little time.

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Things that go Boom

 As I was digging around the bottom of the lead pile looking for the last two figures I needed for the Spearman unit I plan to start soon I stumbled upon these.  I think I bought them to be fortress guns, but they could work just as well as Naval guns, in my opinion.  Figures are Old Glory.  

I painted them up based on how I recall the guns being on the USS Constitution the last time I was there, way back in December of 2019  before the world went to $#it.

These look like 24 pounders when I compare them to the Old Glory 12 pounders.


8 guns, that's 4 batteries in my standard organization

These look like 32 pounders to me.

4 guns, or 2 batteries

And here's the whole lot.

Maybe it's time to build a fortress, or Port defenses?


I'm supposed to be working on a unit of Renaissance troops, and since I found these in the pile, I painted these up.


A commander with his loyal retainer.  To bad the retainer has an arrow in his thigh.  I bet that hurt.

A slightly better view of the arrow.


But wait, there's more!

Not sure what I'll do with these, but I liked the figures so I had to paint them.  They seem more appropriate for a vignette not necessarily a command stand.  They aren't based yet, but here they are.


Looks like someone's about to have a little heart ache

And a slightly different view.  I really like this casting.



And if you thought the arrow in the thigh looked painful, how about this poor chap?


Sorry about the unpainted dirt (joint compound) around his base.

I promise I'll get back to work on the Renaissance figures for Outlandishian Chronicles  soon.  But after having cranked out over 350 vehicles and 450+ (really tiny) infantry figures for the Eurica Campaign, I need to paint some 'fun' stuff.

Take care and stay safe.

So much lead, so little time.




Monday, April 25, 2022

Monday, April 18, 2022

More Painting

So, there's been a little more progress on the painting front.  The brief snow storm we had yesterday forced me in from doing yard work, so I was able to finish the below unit.

I know I'm supposed to be painting up reinforcements for the Earl to use in the next installment of the Outlandishian Chronicles, but these fellows have been sitting primed and waiting on the painting table for close to 3 years now, so I decided to finally paint them.  Figures are old glory.

Just your basic generic unit of French in greatcoats (a.k.a. targets for Russians).  I had forgotten how fiddly the bayonets are on Old Glory figures.  One wrong look and they snap off.  This now gives me 4 units (battalions) of great coated infantry which will probably become one of the Regiments in Compan's Divison given my 1812 organization focus.



And just to prove I haven't completely forsaken the Earl I found this figure in the lead pile.  I think at this point in the Outlandishan campaign the Earls best bet may be to resort to prayer.  

The lighting and focus weren't kind.  He looks better in the lead... honest,

Take care,

So much lead, so little time