Thursday, 24 April 2014

Spanish Genitors

These are my Spanish genitors, widely regarded as some of the best light cavalry that fought in the Italian wars. In game terms they wear light armour and shield giving them a 4+ save, have throwing spears and javelins and can be armed with a light crossbow. For abilities they have Feigned Flight and Parthian Shot as standard and can be upgraded to veteran. Taking all this into account they are a very useful tool to have in the box.

I've based some of these in two's, as they get used in every game they get a lot of handling and a larger base gives them a bit of stability. (as long as Windy doesn't fumble them!!!)
They are a mix of TAG and Foundry figures, some of which are based on Old Glory horses. Again carrying cloth standards from Pete's Flags. All bases and movement trays are from warbases.

I've painted the shields different to one another and replaced some with oddments from elsewhere, I like the irregular feel this gives them.

The house in the background is made from modular block sections from Warbases, the walls are bits of wood from B&Q all covered with textured paint and ink washed. The roofs are Wills pantiles. it took a while to put together but I like the battered look of it and it's a decent size on the table. another one is being assembled at the moment.

Well that's all my Spanish troops really, apart from a couple of light multi barrelled guns that I don't use much. next I think I'll put up my Landsknechtes, a couple of decent sized pike blocks and a couple of skirmishing arquebus units.
As for the gaming front we had a few games of Saga last night. It's been a while since we last played and we seem to have forgotten most of the rules. Blitz came over with his Jomsvikings and showed just how powerful these little chaps are! Blitz has his own blog showcasing some of the best painting you will find on the net, and he's a decent bloke, have a look here-

Friday, 18 April 2014

Imperialists Vs Venetians battle report

This is my first battle report so any comments you have, good or bad please let me know.
Good Friday and a day off work, with our lass at work what better way to spend the day than pushing a few toys around?
Today would see the Holy Roman Empire (me) face off against the Venetians (Windy Pete). A straight forward pitched battle scenario. 3000points with free general and ASB. We have a house rule that you may take a free General and ASB if they are 'non combatant', ie they don't join a unit and are only used for Leadership and re-roll abilities. If you want a fighty General then you have to pay for him as normal, we also don't target Generals as this is regarded as very unsporting sir!!!
Windy set up with a strong centre comprising of Romagnol pikemen and Swiss mercenaries, covered with skirmishers and flanked by clouds of light cavalry- stradiots and mounted crossbows. Now Windy likes his skirmishing cavalry and my flanks have been turned on more than a few occasions, would today be the same? He kept his heavy cavalry and general in the centre.

Windys initial deployment-
I set up with two units of landsknechtes in the left centre, covered with skirmishers, these were supported on the left flank by allied Spanish in the shape of a pike block, swordsmen and crossbows .On the right flank I put a unit of Genitors- excellent light cavalry- and in the centre, my general and heavy cavalry.
Imperial deployment-
Down the table shot-

Initial moves were as expected, Windys light cavalry tried to envelop on both flanks and the centre surged forward, confident with the Romagnol and Swiss pikes pushing on eager to get to grips with the Landsknechtes.

Windys centre pushes forward, lucky yellow dice at the ready-
The Imperials edged forward covered by shot, knowing the Swiss were more than a match for the pikes, the arquebusiers started peppering the enemy at long range, not many casualties yet, but a start. The skirmishers sport both standards and musicians, these play no roll in the game but I like flags, lots of flags!
On the Imperialist left the Spanish sure forward as they are only faced with skirmishers, light cavalry and some Italian swordsmen. However the pikeblock took a bag load of casualties from said skirmishers! Revenge will be forthcoming sir!!-
As expected the Stradiots got around my flank and charged my crossbowmen, I thought I could shoot enough of them to halt the charge, but no, they saved all but one casualty and charged home. No problem I thought- they're only light cavalry- four casualties later I wasn't so confident, not the usual throwing spears this time but thrusters- sneaky Windy! plus one strength cancelled my light armour save. It was lucky the crossbows were still numerically superior and could fall back in good order otherwise the Stradiots would have had free reign to hit my unprotected rear ooh-err!! 

The Italian swordsmen got a rush of blood to the head and charged the Spanish pikeblock, this turned out to be a bad move and they lost by two, being out of the Generals' command range didn't help and they decided to head for the hills.

Off you go swordsmen- that'll teach you to turn up with unpainted bases!
The swordsmen breaking turned out to be the pivot point of the game, with failed panic tests for the Gendarmes, Swiss, crossbows and light cavalry it looked as though the whole army had decided it was time to be elsewhere! Now Windy likes his yellow dice but on occasion turns the air blue when they don't perform to his liking- this was one of those occasions.
 The Venetians retreat-
However, they all rallied up but the Gendarmes were hit frontally by the Spanish pike- not a good thing. The Genitors had worked their way around the back and were ready to charge the newly rallied Swiss. The Romagnols depleted ranks show just how much punishment they'd endured from the Imperial arquebusiers.

The Gendarmes broke in the melee and Windy threw in the towel, saving the Swiss to fight another day.

Final positions-
Having out shot the Venetian skirmisher screen the Imperials could concentrate all the fire power on one pike block, the Romagnols, with devastating results. With the panic that followed the swordsmen breaking the Venetian attack broke up and a confused centre was surrounded and picked off piece meal. The Stradiots on the left flank were beaten off by the crossbowmen and fled the field.
Result- Imperial victory.
We then went on to put the world to rights, agreed how good Salute had been and arranged to play Saga later this week, all washed down with copious cups of tea and biscuits- an enjoyable way to spend a few hours!

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Spanish Foot

This week the Spanish foot. One of my favourite units are the swordsmen. In WAB you can upgrade them to heavy armour with bucklers, along with their 'swordsman' ability of a +1 save against infantry that gives them a 3up save and a movement of 5", light infantry counting 2 ranks with a full command - what's not to like?
These are Assault Group (TAG) figures, not the cheapest but very nice.


This is the same unit but made with Foundry figures, I've added a priest in there as the Spanish in this period were a bit keen on religion, to say the least!

The pike blocks are both TAG, along with a couple of Foundry figures for variation, and a monk. I like adding halberdiers and swordsmen to the front ranks, mainly so when two pike blocks engage the forward facing pikes don't knock lumps off the figures.

These are handy troops to have around, especially if you have the option to make them Stubborn. Halberdiers with heavy armour. Mainly TAG again with a Gamezone leader holding the two handed sword.

The first unit of arquebusiers are again by TAG- I like TAG!

Second unit by Foundry, along with another priest- I like priests!

This is a shot of all my Spanish foot. I do have some Spanish cavalry but not many, only the Genitors, I'll see if I can get some decent pics for next week.

All my figures are based on Warbases single and multiple bases, I like putting light infantry on 20mmx 25mm bases opposed to the heavies on 20mm x 20mm or multiples thereof. The movement trays are again from Warbases. The flags are all printed on cloth from Pete's Flags. They are attached to brass rod so I can swop them about as dictated by swinging alliances characteristic of this period.
Pete's flags, top bloke, top flags-      Pete's Flags
Bases, movement trays and much more, recommended-       Warbases

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Salute - what a day!

Well it's Saturday night and we're back from Salute, six hours after leaving the show and I'm still buzzing. Everything you could ever want from the wargaming world under one roof, mind you it's a massive roof!! The thing that sticks with me every year is the sheer size of the thing. This year the queue was in the hall next to the show hall- Excel is like a tardis- there must have been 2,000 people in front of us in the pre-paid line and we feared a long wait to get in but at ten o'clock the doors opened and we started moving forward, the line entered the hall at walking pace and were in in less than ten minutes, well done London Warlords/ Excel staff for excellent crowd control.

I was set to write a blow by blow account of our day but, to be honest the whole experience is just a blur. There's just too much to take in, games, displays, traders, painting completion. Below are some of the games I stopped to look at, only a few of the many that stood out, apologies to the organisers who put these on but I didn't get all the individual or groups names-

                                                                 D Day landing-
Fantasy skirmish game, beautiful set up-

Newark Irregulars, fighting up a hill, and what a hill!!!

Wargames Illustrated game run by Duncan MacFarlane-

Romans vs Celts-

Sci-Fi with flying boats, excellent display game-
Rob Brooms War and Conquest game-
There were also some companies with static displays showing off their wares-
These Dark Age buildings stood out a mile.
Apologies for the crappy pictures, I've a new camera and haven't a clue how to use it. What was I saying about oldies and technology??!!
Purchases- I got the new Rus I wanted from Gripping Beast although the Crescent and Cross book wasn't available due to printing problems however the figures were there in abundance and very nice they are too. I decided to wait to buy a full set rather than get it piecemeal.
A pack of Gendarmes for my Italian wars and a pack of drinking Landsknechtes for a bit of variety from Foundry.
I saw the metal set of Polish winged hussars from Warlord and couldn't resist, after closer inspection of the figures I'm glad I didn't, they're full of charisma and movement, I can't wait to get these on the painting table.

Things to look out for in the near future- new plastic Agincourt to Orleans 15th century figures from Perrys and the early Saxons from Curteys.

Rob Broom author of War and Conquest and Scarab miniatures supremo hinted he may put on a games day in the North, good news for us from Yorkshire and we'll all support it.

One thing that did stand out was the abundance of science fiction games and figures, there's some very talented sculptors around which can only be a good thing. After a series of discussions in the car on the way home we've reached the decision that games Workshop has priced 40k out of the market what with extortionate prices for figures and re hashing rulebooks and codex's much too often (personal opinions - no offence meant). The void left is being filled with smaller more user friendly companies producing a varied array of top notch games. Science fiction is not my bag at all but credit where credits due.

Overall conclusions- the hobby is flourishing!! there was an abundance of youngsters around, many new companies and new lines from existing established companies, all in all the future looks good.

One last thing - Redoubt Enterprises- I forgot how good some of these are, I say 'some' as a few of the earlier sculpts seemed flat and rushed. the new Pancerni displayed on the stand were SUPERB! If you haven't checked these out then I suggest you have a look if you're any interest in the Eastern renaissance.

A good day, well dione to all involved, even the £15.00 parking didn't spoil it.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Heavy Cavalry and Commanders

As promised some pictures of existing units. This was the first heavy cavalry unit I did, they portray a Milanese mercenary unit fully kitted out with plate armour, plate bards, lances, warhorses, full command and kitchen sink! Front Rank figures from their Wars of the Roses range. I got these from Front Rank two years ago at Salute, in the past 24 months they've seen a lot of action and their 'First Charge' has seen them break the enemy line many times.

This guy is a Locotennat, a mercenary commander of small number of units.
He's an old Hinchliffe figure with his right arm replaced with a Perry plastic replacement.

This guy is a bit higher up in the command chain, indicated by the additional foot figures on the base.
These are Ral Partha figures, a bit on the small size but, and this is my own opinion, if a figure looks good on the table I'll use it.

I use this feller as Cesare Borgia, he's a Bear's Den commander accompanied by Gamezone bodyguards.

With the Renaissance period having so much variety I'm keen to mix and match as many manufacturers miniatures as I can. I've never been one to stick to one range or manufacturer, my motto is - 'share the wealth' (and my kids take that literally).
This is me in Rhodes doing what I love- looking at old cannons!
Can you spot the cannon ball under my shirt?
I watched Game of  Thrones last night and I'm now looking for a figure to represent 'The Hound', any suggestions for a large, mean, ugly killing machine?? 

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Looking forward to Salute

It seems I've managed to upload a page- who says us oldies can't use modern technology :)

This week it's Salute and we'll be attending for the third year. By 'we' I mean me and my fellow gamers who shall be know by the following aliases- 'Windy Pete' the same Pete with the catch phrase "That's nice is it new- oops!!!", 'Fingers'- a top class painter even after his accident with a circular saw, hence the nick-name and Tom! Tom's our rules lawyer, he tends to grasp the principles of a rule set after just one read through, something that takes the rest of us weeks to get to grips with. It'll be an early start, 6:30am with just over a three hour trip, but if the show's anything like the last two it'll be well worth it.

Things on the 'to buy' list-
Gripping Beast, more Pagan Rus for my Saga warband.
The Crusades supplement for Saga, and hopefully a play test if we can get through the crowds!
Medieval Warfare magazine subscription from WSS, if you don't get this and you're interested in anything vaguely Medieval then you're missing a treat.
Warbases- modular buildings and plastic markers for WAB- these are things like Shieldwall, Veteran, Stubborn etc, ideal when the old memories going!!

Anything on Russian/Polish/Ottoman Turk warfare in the late sixteenth, early seventeenth century. After seeing the TAG Renaissance ranges for these I'm just about ready to pitch in and spend the next couple of years 'doing' this period. I just need a bit of reading matter, (Dave Lanchester books here I come) and to convince my gaming buddies to opt in and away we go. Got a bit side tracked there, something I tend to do on a regular basis.

No doubt there'll be loads to see and tempt the credit card but as it's the premier European wargames show I don't mind pushing the boat out a bit and loading up on goodies to keep the itch scratched for a while, well until Partizan.

I'll post my thoughts on the show and some pics, that's if I remember to take my camera, something I didn't do last year.

As I haven't got anything new done this week this a down table shot of a Pike and Shotte game we had with Robbie and John from Durham. Robbie's got a brilliant blog, go here-
for a brilliant read.
More on Salute at the weekend.

Sunday, 6 April 2014


After enjoying many wargames blogs on the net providing decent entertaining reading material I thought I'd have a go and show case my ever increasing 28mm armies, share my experiences of games played and shows attended, along with slices of life from my part of the world, Yorkshire, known far and wide as God's country.

First a bit about what you can expect from my little piece of the net. At the moment I'm 'into' the Great Italian Wars. I'm building armies for the Papal States and to run alongside these as Allies, the Spanish. Landsknechtes feature a bit as mercenaries but as yet, no Swiss- this will no doubt change eventually. I've amassed quite a collection over the last couple of years but with the Perrys releasing more and more beautiful figures the collection will continue to grow.

I'll post as and when I can to introduce my existing units and show the new ones' as they are completed. To start with this is probably my favourite unit at the moment, as with most of my wargaming friends, favourite units tend to change quite regularly!

 This unit is to represent the Romangols. I like to base each unit up to portray a small scenario, these are receiving payment from the Popes' envoy to ensure their loyalty for the upcoming battle.

This unit is built primarily with Perry plastics with added metals for variety. As most armours were similar throughout Europe at this time I've no problem with adding 15th Century knights as leaders to this unit. The unit itself is a militia pike block kitted out from Rome.
As this is a test post I'll leave it here and see if I can post it properly.