THE RAMBLINGS OF A FRENCH CANADIAN WARGAMER

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Foundry Biblical range resurrected!

We continue on with the Easter thematic this week ;-)

I just saw that Foundry Biblical range has been completely rearranged and put "au goût du jour" on their Website. It is in my humble opinion one if not THE best Foundry range, and certainly one of my all-time favourite (just don't buy the chariots, royal pain in the a** to assemble they are!). 

Foundry also gets a free sales pitch from yours truly; biblical is one of the most underappreciated period outhere, and even in the Ancients wargaming scene is usually seen as a "parent pauvre" to the Greeks and other favourites. Give it a try folks; unless you despise painting flesh, they are a joy to paint, the history is fantastic and it makes for a nice change from the usual but so often seen Roman legions (yawn). Yes, chariots are a pain to paint, but they. look. so. nice. 

Now, go ahead and click on that nice image and enjoy the fantastic period of warrior-kings, Pharaohs and chariots. You can thank me later. Or invite me over for a game.

Monday, April 6, 2015

New command figures from Murawski

Retreat from Moscow Command

Some new figures this month from Murawski Miniatures; a command pack.

There are 6 figures in the set, 3 of which are cast open handed, allowing them to be equipped with a musket, halberd, or eagle.  
There are also 2 drummers: 

Roger is also going to throw in the middle figure (pic above) for “free” whilst stocks last as the sword didn’t come out properly!  We don’t really know why but you can use him as is or trim the sword off.

Pack price will be: £9.50 for the seven figures

Also the officer casualty figure is now available.


He can be acquired 3 ways :

  • £2 plus shipping
  • FOC with orders over £50
  • As part of the GDW casualty pack for £5
As usual, you can order through Murawski Miniatures website 

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Maryanna of the King

Biblicals for Easter! Can't be more thematic than that!

My last submission of the painting challenge was a unit of Canaanite Royal Guards, "the Maryanna of the King". I just found time to put them on my blog today, as I've been swamped with real life issues recently (like a water leak in my ceiling!)


Each Canaanite city-state had its cast of maryannu, professionnal warrior whose wealth derived from his holding of a fief. Among the general warrior caste of maryanna was an inner elite of "picked men" (na'arun). These elite units comprised infantry as well as chariotry. From these picked men, a small battle guard called the Maryanna of the King served as Royal Guards.


We know very little about the appearance of these soldiers, so I had the choice to use pretty much any colours I wanted. My royal guard chariotry is dressed in  purple so I had to include the colour, and then I used turquoise for the shield and on the command group to differentiate them from my other elite soldiers. It looks like the kind of expensive colours a truly elite unit of the time would wear. While it is probably doubtful they had a common uniform, kings from the Pharaoh to Murat always enjoyed dressing up their elite soldiers so I figure why not? I will gladly accept pictures to prove me wrong. 


I find the bronze of the armour, helmets and weapons gives them a shiny look which works wonder as an elite and spoiled bunch. I normally am not a fan of single pose infantry, but it works well for troops which would be highly disciplined and it will make them stand out in my Canaanite army.

With this unit, I am but a few chariots away and one small unit from finishing my Canaanite army, and actually respecting to the letter the plan I drew up around 2 years ago. That, is not something I manage often!

This unit helped me reached my goal and, even surpassed it! Yeah me! First time I manage that. I'll post a quick post-mortem of the challenge in a few days.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Engagement at Kalisz AAR

A few weeks ago we played a Napoleonic game, using Lasalle. It had been quite a while since we played the period, and I was keen on trying my Duchy of Warsaw troops. As such the game was not very historical, as we used it to put on the table my newly painted Poles as well as other recently painted stuff. We also used this situation as an excuse to use the rarely seen Brunswickers from John.


The game was a very close affair, but in the end the Franco-Polish forces emerged victorious.

The protagonists 

French Empire, under the leadership of Rusti
Duchy of Warsaw, yours truly. For lack of painted artillery, we had to use Bavarian artillery...
Austrian Empire, controlled by Nicolas
The forces of the Duke of Brunswick, under John





The initial set-up
The Hungarian grenadier garison
The fight starts on the East flank
The Black Brunswickers begin crossing the bridge
The French, as per their DNA, move aggressively towards the Austrians
The Austrians adopt a defensive position
The Poles advance in order to protect the West flank from the incoming Black troops
The Austrians and French trade fire as the French keep moving forward
The Brunswick cavalry (top) go around the forest to threat the Poles flanks
2nd battalion of the 8th regiment is sent to answer the cavalry threat
2nd battalion of the 8th regiment in position
The Polish artillery deploy and unleash murderous fire into the advancing Brunswickers
The elite Hungarian Grenadiers, courageous to a fault, leave the city of Kalisz to charge the french
Both French and Polish artillery keep pounding at the enemy
The Hungarian Grenadiers charge but suffer casualties from a very well placed volley from the defending French battalion
The Brunswickers approach the defending Polish forces
The Grenadiers are pushed back, and can feel the Warsaw forces approaching on their flanks
The Brunswick deploy their battalions
Gen von Geck, the Austrian commander, sees his line pushed back by the relentless French assaults
The Landwher bravely faces the veteran legions of the French
The Austrian battery hammers round after round the French linesto little success
The 1st Battalion of the 8th regiment of the Duchy of Warsaw stands its ground in front of Brunswick's fire
The Hungarian Grenadiers, who just moved backwards, faced with mounting casualties, are charged by fresh Polish forces
The Hungarian grenadiers break from the Polish charge, and the remnants of the battalion hides in the city
The French battalions charge the Landwher
The Upper Austrian Landwher, after valiantly taking a french battalion in hell with them, breaks, leaving the unreliable Salzburg Landwher all alone
On the other flank the Brunswickers and Poles exchange fire, to little results
The Brunswick cavalry manages to go behind the Polish lines, who move to face the menace. Alas it comes too late for the allies.
Carnage on the Austrian line; the Salzburg Landwher are destroyed, the Austrian eastern flank collapses!

Conclusion

The destruction of the Landwher, combined with the quasi-destruction of the elite Grenadiers were a huge blow for the Austrians. On the other flank, while taking little damage the Brunswickers were simply incapable of breaking the steadfast Poles. Left with little chances of victory, the allies  leave the battlefield as night sets in. The French, exhausted, choose not to follow. Marginal victory for the Franco-Polish force.

Post mortem
  • It was a fun and beautiful game which felt like a real Napoleonic battle.We all loved seeing the lines of battle move like a real battle would.
  • Rusty and his French were the hero of the day, relentlessly attacking the poor Austrians, who's defensive lines simply could not hold up.
  • The plan of the Franco-Polish force worked well; the Poles were to hold the western flank while the French were to aggressively go after the Austrians, and then move to the Brunswick's back (it didn't get to this for lack of time).
  • The lack of space on the western flank really hampered the movement of my Duchy of Warsaw forces. While I successfully fended off John's attacks, my initial deployment was too crowded. In hindsight I should've put a battalion or two West of the forest. I was afraid they would get shredded by the Brunswick artillery from the other side of the river. That almost cost us as the Brunswick cavalry managed, but too late, to go behind our lines. 
  • Lasalle is a good game, but we are now ready to apply some house rules. In particular, the artillery is way underpowered. All 4 batteries on the table had many clear view and opportunities to do damages, but the rules simply did not allow us to take advantage of this.
  • The game was a close affair, and might've been very different with better marksmanship from the Brunswickers. As it was, the Poles holding their line and taking little damage allowed the French to all-out attack and concentrate all but one battalion against the Austrians.
  • Props to Nicolas, who sacrificed the Landwher but managed to keep almost all of his regulars intact (well apart from the Grenadiers). That will make the Austrian high command happy! 
  • It was the first time Rusti and I got to play as ally, and I think we were a good pair and complement each other well. Next Napoleonic game, it might be time to pair John and I together, which I believe never happened.
  • It takes forever to write an AAR! I wanted to write this one earlier but all my free time was spent painting for the Analogue painting challenge.