Saturday, 29 June 2013

Dvx Britanniarum: Caravan to Onna

Another of my group's occasional games of Dvx Britanniarum. We had a go at the Raid on a Wagon Train scenario; a British caravan headed into the town of Onna (just outside modern Southampton) -see here for a previous game. The wagons by the way are from Irregular Miniatures, accompanied by porters from Essex. Here is the tale as told by Peredur one of the British leaders:

Saxons have been raiding our lands too freely of late. Our lord Constantine decided to accompany the caravan of supplies into Onna himself and asked me to go with him. We were almost there and I thought we would get home without trouble when we heard the Saxon horns and then Uffa and his men appeared through a gap in the hills.

Hastily Constantine  formed his companions and supporting milites into a shieldwall but as the Saxons closed he cunningly withdrew evading their initial fury. I formed my own men into a shieldwall to support him but before we could join the fray, Constantine took the fight to the Saxons and got the better of their hearthguard in the first blows.

I was torn between whether to stay and fight with Constantine or to keep moving toward the town with the caravan. In the end Constantine waved me to keep going so we broke our shieldwall and left the fight to him. Behind us we could hear the sounds of more battle as the the companions and hearthguard clashed again but I tried to concentrate on Onna, our goal. Soon I saw that Octavius and his levy had sallied forth from the town to cover us.

Uffa and Constantine clash while Peredur looks on
I thought we were there, but then Octavius signaled to me from the hill that more Saxon warriors were coming.  I saw they would soon be on the caravan. Octavius waved again; he was too far to catch them so I spurred my men on into their flank. It was a desperate struggle but we threw the Saxons back. Then beyond the Saxon warriors, I saw our boys with bows; they had been harrying the Saxons and now they loosed a final flurry of arrows, enough to dislodge our foes.

We had the edge now and the Saxons withdrew as our caravan nervously walked into the town. A little later later, Constantine arrived in town alone, pursued by Uffa's hearthguard. All of his companions had fallen and he himself had only escaped due to the selfless action of our champion, Conan; we drank much of the ale that was on the wagons in his memory.

The caravan makes it home to Onna
Another excellent game. The British companions and the warriors with them were soundly beaten by the Saxon hearthguard and the British morale was reduced to 1. However, the British were able to hold off the warriors threatening the caravan which sneaked home into town. Quite unusually this was a game where archers (British) made a real difference. The British do need a new champion, though.

My thanks to Derek & John (British) and Marcus & Phil (Saxons) who played the game in excellent spirit.

Saturday, 15 June 2013

LFS: The Battle of Lardois

This is an AAR of a battle I played a little while ago using TFL's Le Feu Sacre napoleonic rules which are intended for use at corps level. The standard 'starter' scenario for LFS is known as the Battle of Larden (see here) and uses French and Prussian troops; both sides have two infantry divisions, a cavalry division and an artillery reserve. I adapted this to use my Anglo-Allied troops instead of Prussians, with one division of British/Hanoverians under Picton and one of Dutch-Belgians (and Brunswickers) under Perponcher.

The French move into Petit Lardois as the British approach Grand Lardois
The game began with both sides arriving on blinds, at one blind per turn (my blinds are too small, I know). The French headed for Petit Lardois and the British for Grand Lardois (the 4ground buildings). The objective for both sides was to take both villages.

French attack on Windmill hill

In fact there was a pretty abysmal series of spotting rolls initially which meant that both sides ended up pretty up close and personal before any figures appeared on the table. The French managed to seize the initiative with concerted attacks on Perponcher's command (which was caught semi-deployed) and their cavalry threatened the allied centre; although the Black Watch formed square they took a terrible pounding from close range French artillery and then were swept away when the cavalry did charge.
French cavalry sweep away the Allied centre
The British position was saved only by the arrival of their own cavalry which, being fresher than the French, was able to drive them back though not with huge effect (in LFS cavalry vs cavalry combats tend not to be very decisive). In fact this was really the only success that the Allies enjoyed.
British cavalry to the rescue
Although the French were initially repulsed from the windmill hill by the Brunswickers, a second wave of assault succeeded in taking the hill. Meanwhile on the far side of Grand Lardois the second French Division moved into the attack against the remnants of Picton's Division, which was spread far too thin and was demoralised by more artillery fire. The British, though supported by Hanoverians, were overwhelmed and the Hanoverians being brittle troops fled without fighting.
French attack flanking Grand Lardois
With very few infantry units left in good morale, I decided that the Allied were beaten and would withdraw, though their cavalry were still in good shape and could cover the withdrawal. All in all this was a bad day for the Duke and clearly a victory for the French.

Final position - a bad day for the Duke
While I enjoyed the game a lot, with hindsight I did bite off a bit more than I could chew here for a solo game. With about 20 units per side, and never being the quickest of players, I found it quite hard work. Next time I play I may be less ambitious and will downsize a little but they are definitely fun rules:

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Operation Market Larden

I was fortunate  yesterday to be able to attend a Lardy Games Day in Evesham organised by the Wyvern Wargamers. This was my first such event and it was an excellent day with about 40 people attending. The central location meant that people were able to come from a wide area; its not often I get to game with people from Torquay, Nottingham or Wales. Richard Clarke's upcoming Chain of Command WWII rules were being showcased and, it wasn't exactly surprising that they were very popular. In all there were a total of eight tables with games played on them, including a couple of 'Lard-Approved' games. I'm putting in at least one picture of each table below.

I had a chance to play both Dux Britanniarum and Chain of Command, both of which I very much enjoyed. All of the games were played in an excellent spirit and there was a really great atmosphere. Afterwards many people repaired to a nearby hotel bar and then a curry; an excellent and memorable end to the day.

My thanks to all at Wyvern who organised the event. I very much hope to go back again if there is another such day and would heartily recommend this kind of event to anyone else with a keen interest in the Too Fat Lardies games.

Rich's Chain of Command

IABSM - Normandy 1944 (I think)

Classic Sharp Practice in the Peninsular

I Ain't Been Nuked Mum
(modern IABSM)

Mud & Blood
Russo Japanese War
Dux Britanniarum
Tin Star - Wild West 
Diesel Punk Air Combat

Refreshments in the Tea Break