Monday, 16 June 2014

Operation Market Larden 2

On Saturday I had a trip over to Evesham to the Wyvern Wargamers club for a day devoted to Too Fat Lardies games. I did this last year and had a really good day. This year I had not expected to be able to go but the in the end a place came up at the last moment and I travelled over with Mike from Peterborough. I had an even better day this time, I think. The atmosphere was really good and everyone seemed to be having a great time. One of things I like about Evesham is that it is very central so we had people coming from a very wide area, from North, South, East & West.

The Hall with games in action (in the afternoon)
In the morning I played an excellent game of Sharp Practice, Indian Mutiny run by Simon Walker: 'Saving Mrs Ryan'. This was a real treat to look at with a table with lots of lovely bits of detail on it. I took the part of the mutineers together with Steve, whose troops were all armed with 'big choppers' but no firearms. Our task was to stop Stuart and Geoff's British who we're trying to get through the village and board the boats. Steve's guys piled in bravely, while my chaps, who arrived in column down the road backed them up. By the time we stopped at lunch, we'd knocked some pretty significant holes in the British and although some of them would probably have escaped I'm pretty sure many of them wouldn't without a stiff fight from my mutineers. A 'jolly good game'.

The Indian Village; mutineers on blinds
Mutineers trying to get a shot in - yes that is redcoats n both sides!
A random event & the baboon join in
Mutineers moving up through the village
The natives with the choppers charge the British (again)
Bodies everywhere on the road...

In the afternoon I played another game of Sharp Practice with Dave and John. This time what I would call 'classic' napoleonic in the Peninsular. This was another very enjoyable game run by Jim Ibbotson and again it was lovely to look at. This was a three cornered affair with French, Spanish and British. I chose as the British to go with light infantry and rifles whereas in the morning they went with line, which probably helped to vary it a bit. 

It was quite difficult to coordinate between the British and Spanish, not least was we had different objectives: the Spanish to hold the village and the British to 'rescue' one of the Spanish big men who was a British spy. I did succeed in getting my leader over to the Spanish priest and tried to talk him round but  frankly had more important things on his mind (like stopping his men getting killed by the French). I did quite well in getting my rifles to snipe at the French line from long range, but left my flank open and my lights were charged from behind which wasn't great. I think the French probably shaded it even though none of us technically fulfilled our objectives. An excellent scenario which I am very tempted to steal, though I will need some Spanish first.

The Spanish try to get into cover away from the French line
Rifles & lights team up on the French
The French line is thinned - but by no means broken

There were plenty of other games, all of which looked very good:

Chain of command: Rich's Le Port game which he took to Salute

Geoff Tin Star game, which was back for a second year.

As was Nick O's modern I Ain't Been Nuked Mum.

Another Chain of Command game. Benouviulle on D-day run by Ade, which I know he'd researched painstakingly.

Kiss Me Hardy run by the author Nick Skinner. I'm really a land lubber with my gaming but the look of this did leave me tempted...

'Sidney Roundwood''s Verdun game, Operation Gericht. Again heavily researched and  with lots of background to add to the excitement

Last, but certainly not least was mike's Bloody Omaha game, which was the biggest game on show and was an all-dayder though with a change of team at lunchtime.

After a full day's gaming we repaired to the pub followed by an excellent curry. A truly memorable day. Thanks so much to Ade and the gang for organising it. I am looking forward to OML3 already.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Peterborough Games Day - Bloody Omaha

This weekend I was able to attend an all day game at the Peterborough club and to play in Mike Whitaker's 'Bloody Omaha'. This was my first ever game of IABSM and it was just awesome.

Mike took the part of the Germans, while the rest of us, Alex, Carl, Andy B(?) and myself took the Americans. Needless to say it was a struggle and of course we took took pretty heavy casualties. However, ultimately we were successful in establishing a pathway off the beach.

In fact we were pretty fortunate in that the '88' firing down the beach was dispatched early on by naval bombardment and that meant that our Sherman DD's lasted a lot longer than was expected. Also the German artillery was clearly engaged elsewhere most of the time as they were late turning up and only managed a couple of fire missions.

A special thanks to another Andy (M, I believe) who had a big hand in the terrain but who wasn't there for most of the day! You can read more about it on Mike's own blog, Trouble At t'Mill.

Finally, if you are going to OML next week, where Mike is running the game again, this is a real treat.

The table at game start - 4 sherman DDs on the beach
The first waves land on the beach...
..while the Germans wait to pound them from their bunkers.

Getting further up the beach and into a bit of shelter from the MG fire
Getting up the cliff and starting to cross the wire

Getting their feet wet again.. in the marsh

We're not doing badly here until...

.. the artillery hits.

Pushing on ...

..and over the line. Beach-head established!
So that was Bloody Omaha. This has done nothing to discourage me from getting into IABSM. Oh dear another project for the list...

Before the game proper, we mucked around a bit with the rules and it happened very differently.... Three Sherman DDs knocked out by the '88' in short order!