Saturday 31 October 2015

Halloween Madness 2015: The Dead Walk Again

Pulp Citizen has published a full battle report for out annual Halloween Madness game of Pulp City, featuring Zombies, Killer Apes, Super Heroes, and more Zombies. Follow this link to read the full report. 

Monday 26 October 2015

VBCW: The Defence of Dorstone!

I joined Giles and JP for a VBCW game in Hereford  last week. It was a Big Game in every sense of the word with fifteen players, including some old familiar faces and even a few new ones. 

I was fighting with Lord Robert Grover, nephew and heir apparent to the Duke or Farnham, for the Royalist Course. My fellow Royalist JP found himself besieged in the rural village of Dorstone by the dastardly brigand Sir Gilbert and his hired thugs, along with their depraved Anarchist allies. 

Sir Gilbert, devious rogue and reputed head of a huge smuggling and organised crime network, needed to capture Dorstone to allow him unrestricted access into the heart of Herefordshire. JP's men had barricade their village and prepared to resist until relieved by Lord Robert Grover. Lord Robert's men were to enter from the East, over the hills and fields (which made my decision to bring armoured cars instead of a tracked light tank a bit foolish as they could hardly mover in the muddy English fields).
Our Battlefield. The village of Dorstone, Hereford

Some odd locals- not all that friendly

Sir Gilbert- The dastardly rogue!

Anarchist gun truck attacking the Royalists barricades

JP's men braving enemy fire to man the barricade!

Lord Henry Flashthorpe (Lord Robert's cousin and renowned big game hunter turned Anarchist hunter for the day, and his valet, Brown)

Lord Robert's men to the rescue!

A Royalist Armoured Car!

In another part of the county Anglican League use rocket batteries to pound Royalist positions in the village of Kinersley 

Lord Robert's forces arrive in strength in the East of the village and prepare to drive Sir Gilbert's bandits from the gardens of the village. 

Lord Robert Grover- Dashing as ever!

Royalist soldiers take up positions to hold the eastern side of the village

Anarchist cavalry are driven off, protecting Lord Robert's flank

Mad Wullie, Sir Gilbert's terrorist leader, bombs JP's armoured car, the last line of defence in the western portion of the village

Sir Gilbert's roguish hirings scramble like rats across the Royalist barricade, but without more support were they too little, to late? 
 Sir Gilbert's attempts to drive JP's Dorstone Royalists from the barricade were partially successful, and in the last turn of the game he managed to get four men over the defences, but for the most part his force was spent, and his casualties had been high. In contrast Lord Robert's casualties had been light and he was poised to retake the barricades with ease. The Anarchist had proved they lacked the moral fibre to go toe to toe with brave English Royalist and had sulked in the hedges and orchards. Their casualties were low too, and had they have tied a more offensive tactic then they might have been able to push the Royalists harder.  In the end we decided it was a draw, as Sir Gilbert lacked the men to hold the village and push home the attack, by the Royalists were by no means successful in driving off the attackers, and indeed JP's force was significantly depleted. Lord Robert's platoon suffered a total of ten casualties, mostly groundsmen and Royalist soldiers. The most tragic loss was Cornet Albert 'Binko' Binksley who was killed by a mortar shall while acting as a liaison with the Royalist defenders of Dorstone. He was just eighteen years old. 

RIP Binko. 

Sunday 25 October 2015

Zomtober 2015: Week 4

Two more zeds finished for Carl's Zombiecide Project. I feel a bit like I am running out of steam now, nut there are only a handful left, so I am going to plod on and try to get them finished by the end of Zomtober. 

Zombie Goth (with Alice Cooper eye make up!)

Zombie Pimp (or Zombie Liberace?)

Sunday 18 October 2015

Zomtober 2015: Week 3

Three more of Carl's Very Infected People finished for Zombicide. Only two I am afraid as I when to London for a midweek birthday trip with my wife and I didn't think she would appreciate it if I took my zeds to paint while we were away. That brings the total to nine so fare. 
Is there a doctor in the house?

Hello Sailor!

Saturday 10 October 2015

Zomtober 2015: Week 2

 Four more of Carl's Zombiecide VIP's completed- and I am still loving painting these guys. I love the sculpts and am very glad Carl likes them extra gory. I am posting before Sunday because I am at work tomorrow. 

Fast Food Guy (maybe he works at the same place as the Hot Dog Guy last week)

Princess Leia Cosplay Girl (a bit random, but still cool)

A Variant Fatty -formerly a school boy (not sure why he has copper pipe sicking out of his body but there you go).

A Cop or Security Guard

Friday 9 October 2015

Battle of Ardennes 1944: Scenery

I thought I would inject a little life into my Ardennes terrain and I would begin with some 1940's style cars. These are repainted Lledo diecast cars bought on ebay for a couple of quid, with my patented plaster filler and white paint snow effect added. The bus has been abandoned for some time and has icicles and is covered with snow. The green van has been in a crash by some desperate refugee who lost control of the van on the ice and it crashed into a wall. 

In future I intend to add a few carts, sheds, wood piles etc, which all help the terrain look a bit more lived in. 

Wednesday 7 October 2015

Chain of Command: Battle of the Bulge

We ventured into the Ardennes Forest for the first time down at Earlswood Wargamers, trying out my freshly refitted Fallschirmjager against Keith's Yankee riflemen. 
We used Chain of Command (CoC) for the first time, and it was a very interesting experiment. We both did a few things wrong (I have subsequent discovered by rereading the rules) but it was good fun for the both of us. The rules are nothing like Bolt Action  (BA) and are far more tactical and probably a lot more realistic (or simulatorary). The flow of the game is a bit  more random, or at least less predicable than BA to, and that is probably a matter of taste. In CoC you usually start with your whole force in reserve, and by the end of the game you might not have even deployed everything you have, and sometime you might not get to do anything with all of the things you do have already on the board, depending how you roll. That might seem a bit frustrating but I think it is a neat way of simulating the natural 'Fog of War' over the battlefield. It forces the commander (player) to think more tactically about the battle, and to view the terrain more like a platoon commander and less like an omnipotent flying eye. Bolt Action, on the other hand, if probably 'fairer' than CoC, and better suited to a competitive game, as there is less randomness to the turns- you know everything is going to get to act eventually even if you don't know what order it will be. It is also less challenging for the player as there is less to think about, and so could be considered more 'fun'. I guess that it all comes down to taste. 

Our game featured a platoon of fallschirmjager contacting a US rifle platoon in the ruins of a small hamlet in the middle of the Ardennes forest during the winter of 1944. A paved lane ran through the village from north to south. A stone wall ran almost the entire length of the west side of this lane. The ruins of a farm occupied the higher ground to the east of the lane.  The Germans were moving in from the east and the US were trying to push in from the west. 

 During the patrol phase the Yanks managed to explore the territory up to the stone wall, while the Fallschirmjager seized the higher ground to the east. Apart from the hill, the terrain to the east was rather open,consisting of snow covered fields, and did not afford much cover to the Germans.  That meant that my jump off points were clustered behind the hill, or on the board edge in an area deprived of useful cover, while Keith's were along the wall, giving him a good firing position from the start of the game. 

Fallschirmjager moving cautious through a snow covered field

Fallschirmjager digging into the ruins on the hill

The Germans began by deploying a section into the ruined house on the hill, and bringing another section on from the board edge to make their way cautiously up the open flank to another ruin at the bottom of the hill. They were moving slowly, making the most of what little cove the undulations in the field could offer. The section in the ruined farm house on the hill set up their MG 42 and went into overwatch, scanning the gloom for any sign of the 'Amis'. 

The US MMG adds serious firepower

American GI's setting up behind the cover of the stone wall

When the Americans appeared the were greeted by the buzz of the MG42 and a clatter of bullets, forcing them to take shelter behind reassuringly solid stone wall. Two sections of riflemen took up positions to the west of the lane, along with a 60mm mortar and a Tripod mounted MMG.  They opened fire on the Fallshirjager crossing the open field, forcing them to dive for cover but failing to inflict any casualties.

The US riffle section sprinting across the field is cut down in a hail of MG 42 Fire. Four out of eleven men survive the crossing. 

Initially the Americans had the upper hand, and could concentrate their fire on the Germans as they tried to advance into the ruined farms along the lane, but as the Germans reached their solid cover and dug into the rubble of the farms the tide of the battle started to swing. The Americans started to dread the mechanical buzz of the MG42, as the Germans superior fire-power began to dominate the battle. One Fallschirmjager team was wiped out by the sustained fire from the Americans, but it was immediately replaced by fresh reserves held back behind the hill, and soon their machine guns were adding to the fire pouring onto the American positions. The American officer rashly sent one section sprinting across a field, but they failed to make it to the safety of a farmhouse on the opposite side. Caught in the open they were sitting ducks for the German MG42's, which cut the section to ribbons. Seven GI's were killed outright in one terrible storm of bullets. The remaining 4 GI's staggered to the ruined farmhouse, but the fight had been knocked out of them by the carnage and played no further part in the battle, leaving the America flank vulnerable. 

Fallschirmjager reserves move up to plug the gaps left by their casualties. 

The American MMG team was then wiped out  after receiving the fire of four MG42's for two rounds. The loss of a section and their MMG left the American on the back foot when it came to fire-power, but they still held a a strong position behind the stone wall, and the Fallschirmjager now had been whittled down so much that they lacked the will to push forward and to take advantage of the situation. The US mortar continued to rain down on the German positions. At the end of the day both forces withdrew, battered and exhausted. Tomorrow they will have to do it all again. 

Sunday 4 October 2015

Zomtober 2015: Week 1

Lets kick of Zomtober with three Zombie VIP's from Zombiecide, painted for my good buddy Carl. I hope everyone is having a great Zomtober.