The Battle for the Wheatfield, Gettysburg Day 2

Following on from the Battle for the Peach Orchard, we gamed the neighbouring wheatfield as well. This game was played in the Garage.

A map of the set up is below.

The Union players were Alan and PaulG while Russ and Terry would be Rebs.

The battle is an engagement where the Union has 3 small brigades on table, 2 Reb brigades attack onto the table and then reinforcements for both sides arrive at differing times.

Paul had the brigade of Swietzer(3 regts), Alan had Tilton (Command rating 7 cautious with 2 regts) and de Trobriand(3 regts and a battery at north edge of wheatfield) at the set up stage. On turn one Paul gets Cross and 3 regts, on turn 2 Alan gets Kelly and the Irish with 2 regts, Paul gets Zook and 3 regts. On turn 3 Alan gets Brooke and 3 regts. All arrive on northern edge of wheatfield.

Russ had Anderson(Command rating 9 , 4 large regts) arriving on the southern edge and Terry with Kershaw(CR9, 3 large regts , Elite) arriving on western edge on turn 1.On turn 2 on southern edge Russ gets Semmes with 4 regts, elite. Then on turn 5 Terry gets Wofford(Aggressive) with 5 elite Georgian regts following in nbehind Kershaw.

Below is the initial set up with Sweitzer/Tilton brigades in the woods. Tilton is in the salient. Poor sods.

Kershaw’s brigade advances on. Large units get an extra shooting dice,2 extra combat dice plus 1 extra stamina.

Anderson advances on.

This is what Kershaws attack would have looked like to Sweitzers men as the Rebs moved through the open ground towards them.

And here are Kerhaws men giving it to Tilton. I decided better to gang up on the facing regt rather than move into the crossfire beyond. Paul responded by moving one of Sweitzers regts to fill the gap between Tilton and de Trobriand.

Semmes brigade arrives on southern edge. This was Russ’s second brigade and the link to Anderson so we could begin to roll back the Union until turn 5 when Wofford will roll in from the west.

The Union reinforcements looked like this as they queue up to enter the wheatfield.

Anderson holding the line as the blue coats flood the wheatfield!

Zook has some friends!! Thankfully the Union brigades did not quite follow their orders and some rushed up….meaning could not fire before Anderson got a shot at them……so bit disjointed an attack. And Anderson has 4 large regts so thats 16 shooting dice a turn against stamina 3 Union regts so a few good southern volleys and the blue bellies will be in trouble.

Semmes advances towards Tilton/de Trobiand

Over in the west Union shooting has halted Kershaw’s disordered regts. In standard Black Powder, Elite units roll on a 4+ at the start of their turn to recover from disorder. In ACW supplement, that is a 6+ and I just wasn’t throwing any of those. But being large units I was dishing out some firepower and Tilton now had 1 whupped unit. If you fail a break test from shooting you are deemed whupped so u must withdraw and stay 12 inches away from the enemy and are permanently shaken.

The Union brigades march across the wheatfield. In the foreground is a whupped unit retiring.

Just testing some new toys below. LED smoke lights that flicker.

AWESOME.

Paul has moved a regt from Sweitzer to assist Tilton in the salient. As Wofford was due on it should make my race for the wheatfield easier. With Semmes moving up to link with Anderson we should be able to roll back the smaller, weakened Union brigades.

It wasn’t all going to plan, Semmes Blunders and retires!

Anderson holding the road/wall line and the 2 regts of crazy Irish can be seen in centre left heading for the woods to support Sweitzer. The blunder by Semmes leaves Anderson a bit exposed longer than anticipated but these are hardy southern boys! But Anderson is doing enough shooting damage.

Wofford moved up to support an advance regt of Kershaw’s while Kershaw is rallying the unit behind.

Pauls east most brigade would just not follow orders and advance on Anderson’s open flank!

Semmes has recovered and here he comes! The firefight in the Salient was continuing but the Union were in poor shape.

And Semmes gets charge in on a flank, they won the combat but the staunch blue bellies stood. Next Reb turn another unit went in. That did it. The shaken/whupped Union units are pulling back in the woods.

In the west Wofford/Kershaw have shot up the Union and only the newly arrived Irish brigade was not in retreat. The Irish are armed with smoothbores(shorter range) so the super intelligent rebs are sitting out of range and just…shooting!

The mess that are the Union brigades as Kershaw/Wofford and Semmes roll them back.

And the end game….Semmes has moved up and linked with Anderson, Wofford can be seen on Semmes flank and the Union are on the run.

Anderson watches the retreating Union brigades.

 

The SOUTH shall RISE AGAIN!!

 

Keeping Busy Part 1

Part of the hobby is of course working on things and starting new periods so we can add to the mountain of lead and plastic.

So here’s a brief update from me.

A couple of years ago I signed up for a Kickstarter from THMiniatures Terrain who I gather for Kickstarters are pretty damn good at delivering on time and on promise. The white resin pieces arrived pretty much on time and have languished since in the garage. As moving to preparing my Ancient and Dark Age Armies for future combat decided to paint up the ruins with columns etc that suited somewhere around Rome/Greece/Byzantium regions.

First up I cleaned up any rough bits then soaked the pieces in soapy warm water for roughly ten minutes then rinsed them off and left to dry. I then brush on vallejo 70.921, English Uniform and when dry a liberal coat of GW Agrax Earthhade is applied. When that has dried I lighty brush/drybrush on a thin later of Vallejo 70.819 Iraqui Sand. Then on the walls and columns I then applied a light covering of Vallejo 837 Sand Light.

Once dry then they were flocked with mix of Warlord Games Summer Grass and Spring Alpine Grass. A variety of  tufts were then added. Lastly a very light drybrush of Iraqui Sand was applied to the grass to dull down the greeness a bit. The picture shows some of the pieces completed, with some Romans wandering through them.

One of the Ancient Armies I am collecting is that of Pyrrhus of Epirus. With my EIR army basically complete and now rebased from WAB to Hail Caesar rule set I can give this army some long missing love. Fellow Garage Gamer Alan has been brow beaten into collecting a period army and he has chosen Carthaginians. When he purchased the rule set from Warlord Games they came with a free box so he took the Celts as an option. However, after painting then up and then receiving his Victrix reinforcement Samnites and Carthaginian troops, he chose to sell the Celts on Trade Me(local ebay) and reinvest in Victrix Celts. Being a good mate I helped push price up, and got left buying them so I have another unit of Galatians to add to my army. A good win as got at a steal.

The next unexpected project to crash into me is SAGA. This is a skirmish game set in the  Dark Ages and there is a tournament next month(that’s May). Goldie talked me into playing, wasn’t hard, Russ is playing also but apart from that I only had the rules which had never read. I do have a Gripping Beast Byzantine army to make and also the basics of a Moorish army so decided would order in bits would need for a SAGA army for both.

You basically need a Warlord…some units of 4 mounted figures, 8 foot warrior figures and 12 man peasants. So I ordered from Caliver Books some Gripping Beast plastic Arab cavalry, a Warlord and some dice. They have arrived and are below beside some painted Artizan Moors I have so these will move to single bases. Only had quick glance at the plastics but look quite nice. From Gripping Beast I ordered a straight Byzantine Warband as don’t want to break up troops destined for the Hail Caesar army. I do have an unpainted Crusader unit of spears/bows so will use those with the mounted figures from the Warband set.

Have had 1 SAGA game other night with Goldie. He had some variation on Crusaders versus my Byzantines and being both newbies we fumbled our way through the game and it got quite exciting. Can see how it is going to be a good game over a few beers or a whiskey! The fun part is your turn where u roll some dice with symbols on them that when rolled are how you select what mix of your special abilities you can activate. Each differing army has differing abilities so I think I am going to enjoy this skirmish game. Will do reports as we play some games.

That’s all for now.

Terry

 

The Flashman Project(part2) by Russell Briant

I have recently started listening to the Flashman Papers in audiobook format during which Sir Harry mentions riding with JEB Stuart’s Confederate Cavalry (and then serving in the Union Army as a military advisor to Ulysses S Grant and being at Gettysburg). So that got me thinking that he could take a more foreground role on the table top, so in March I purchased from Warlord Games the British 17th Lancers Officer set from their Crimean War range, which I arrived at the end of March.

On a recent weekend (1st, 2nd April) I painted him up as a mounted version of Sir Harry Flashman KCB, VC as he might have appeared when observing the American Civil War.

He is wearing a mixed uniform, donning the crimson “Cherrybum” pants of Lord Cardigan’s 11th Light Dragoon (later 11th Hussar), his first regiment, to look less like a blue-belly Yankee to any trigger-happy Confederate cessationist. They also look fine for the ladies.

He is still in the Baltic Blue Lancer’s jacket of his current regiment, the 17th Lancers, with whom he led the charge of the Light Brigade at Balaklava. A loud passing of wind, occasioned by an upset stomach, startled his horse causing it to bolt towards the Roosian guns, triggering the immortal charge into the Valley of Death and further honours for Flashy. That may also give pause for thought for a Union Sharpeshooter.

His Czapka hat is covered by an Indian Pattern White Canvas cover, having recently served in the sub-continent, rather than the black oil skin of the Crimea.

His saddle cloth and blanket roll with their yellow, cavalry, trim have been borrowed from the war stocks of the Army of North Virginia.

His fine mount may well have been foaled on the Blue-Grass country of Kentucky and is likely to have changed sides several times. He’s a fearsome brute but horse riding and a talent for languages are two of three self-described skills Flashy is really good at.

I also found a use for a couple of my stock of rabbits from war-bases.co.uk too. Their relative timidity and search for a bolt-hole likely match Flashman’s own.

While it’s not clear in these photos, a spluttering fused artillery shell has just bored itself to a stop, roughly below Flashy’s scabbard, and who knows when it might go off.

The next episode in the Flashman Project is to have a foot version that can join his dismounted Confederate colleagues (no doubt after his horse has been shot and his means of fleeing the field have contracted).

Studio Miniatures are about to put out this figure in their Sikh Wars British range in the next month or so.

Watch this space…

Russell (guest contributor to Terry’s Garage Gamers blog)

 

 

The Flashman Project(part 3) by Russell Briant

Episode 3

I’ve had the paint brushes out in between reading more from the Flashman Papers.

As I said I was planning in the first post, I have changed Harry to having jet black hair, raised eye brow and cavalry whiskers as per the book. I think I has him looking more like the cover illustrations by Gino d’Achille.

Over the first day of the Easter break I have also had a productive day and finished a Confederate Officer on a fine dapple grey horse. This Southern Beau has been sitting around half finished for months, but with a game of Glory Hallelujah due tomorrow, it was time to get him finished. The miniature is from Perry Miniatures.

I have also taken the chance to place another one of my rabbits. Just one more to use.

In the same photo is Eloise Covington from Bombshell Miniatures showing the fine bow on the back of her costume. Eloise just looked like another miniature that would be part of a Flashman story.

The damsel on the right of the Flashman party and her small bulldog are from Eureka Miniatures. She from the Female victims in the Corpse and Musket 28mm range. I have bought her to be Marshal Massena’s companion, Henriette Leberton, for our refight of Wagram later in the year. Her pooch is from Eureka’s animal range.

Lastly I have added some flock to charging Harry.

 

Correction. I episode 1 I mistakenly said Dr Thomas Arnold was the author of Tom brown’s School Days. He was of course the Head Master of Rugby School from the story. Thomas Hughes was the author.

I’m on the lookout for another Flashman acquaintance – Tommy Bryant.

Bryant turns up as a fellow officer during Harry’s short service with the the 11th Light Dragoons (Cardigan’s soon to be 11th Hussars) in the first of the Flashman Papers (Flashman). He uses Bryant’s slight-of-hand skills to unload Flashy’s opponent’s pistol in a duel (best shot in the regiment, whose French mistress Harry had been caught in bed with). He promised Tom £10,000 to do the deed then reneges on paying him on the basis that he neither has the shekels and knows Bryant can hardly call him out on this without incriminating himself.

Tommy Bryant gets his own back in a later book (Flash for Freedom) making it look like Harry he’s a card cheat by slipping cards into his pocket while our hero is playing vingt et un (21) for pennies with Benjamin Disraeli and others. This nips Harry’s looming political carrier in the bud and sees him nearly kill Bryant when he punches him in the nose causing him to fall down a flight of stairs. Bryant survives, sparing Flashman the noose but forces him to be whisked out of the country on a slave ship.

So I think I am looking for a sneak in a Hussar’s uniform for my near name sake.

The Flashman Project(part 1) by Russell Briant

Episode 1

In recent years I have started to apply some of my wargaming painting time to what I call whimsy projects. Decoration for the wargaming table.

The Flashman project started life as another one of these with the Flash Harry figure from Wargames Illustrated – Giants in Miniature range. Someone to turn up as a bit of colour during Glory Hallelujah – American Civil War – Black Powder games.

Many of you will remember that Flashman is the bully who gets expelled for drunkenness in Tom Brown’s School Days, the book by Doctor Thomas Arnold.

George McDonald Fraser picks him up in the 1960’s, gives him a first (and second) name and sets Harry Paget Flashman off, immediately following his expulsion from Rugby school, as the anti-hero is a dozen novels collectively called the Flashman Papers. Flashman, is a self-confessed bully, coward, toady and rake who appears in many of the pivotal historic moments of Victorian history, escaping from one scrape to the next while picking up ill-deserved laurels and fame as a celebrated hero.

McDonald Fraser references Flashman being present in the American Civil War, on both sides of the argument, but takes special delight in never writing an American Civil War novel – a boring little side show to the great events of the age (or some such) – much to the frustration of his American audience.

As such he gives Flashman some considerable scope to be woven into ACW Black Powder games, as an observer or the British Army, without the constraint of a fully told story.

The poser Flashman vignette below, really took shape with the purchase of the Victorian or Edwardian Photographer set cast by Depot Battalion and purchased from Colonel Bill’s Miniatures.

The Flashman adventure involve plenty of women folk so I added two for his photograph. Flash is accompanied by the tall Caroline Thadington – made by Reaper Miniatures and Mademoiselle Bonaseiur from the Warbases’ Mousquetaires range (I added a ACW Perry plastic kepi to bring her forward a century). Both excel at counting cards in Poker and drinking fellow players under the table.

The trio have caught the eye of Ed and Vic, makers of the finest Carte-de-viste and Daguerreotypes North or South of the Potomac.

Flash1

I plan to soon change Harry’s hair from the fair colour worn by Malcolm McDowell in the 1975 film Royal Flash (based on book two of the Flashman Papers), to the dark tresses of McDonald Fraser’s books that, combined with his swarthy colouring and talent for languages allows him to pass as a Pashtun in Afghanistan.

 

Gettysburg : Peach Orchard 2 July 1863

Recently Russ, Alan, Goldie and I ventured out to the Hutt Club to have an ACW game. Goldie picked the scenario so it was a refight of Gettysburg Day 2 where the Rebels were attacking from Seminary Ridge towards Cemetary Ridge. The rules of choice as ever are ‘Black Powder’ with the addition of the ‘Glory, Hallelujah’ supplement.

On the Confederate side Russ would have the brigades of Barksdale, Wilcox and Wofford. Alan would have the brigades of Posey, Wright and Lang. They also have reserve batteries under Porter. Barksdales Mississippians had the following special rules: Morale 3, Stamina 4, Rebel Yell(reroll 1 miss in H to H on turn charge, Uppity(ignore reluctance to charge and add +1 to charge, and may use initiative to charge). They are elite so roll to remove disorder on  6 at start of turn. Command ratings were Barksdale and Porter 9, Posey 7 and the rest 8.

On the Union side Goldie(Handcock) would have the brigades of Harrow, Hall and Smyth with Webb off table. Terry(me) had the privilege of not only being Sickles, but having the brigades of Graham, Brewster and Carr. Additionally I had 3 batteries under McGilvery which I could attempt to order onto the battlefield and another brigade under Willard which was freshly raised. Command ratings were Handcock and McGilvery 9, Sickles, Carr, Brewster and Graham 7, the rest 8.

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Starting set up as above. Top centre are Sickles 3 brigades of  Graham/Brewster and Carr lined up 2 deep on fence line of Emmitsburg Rd. Graham is the top brigade in the Peach Orchard. Opposite them in the woods are Barksdale/Wilcox with Wofford off table behind Barksdale. On the centre right is Langs brigade around Spangler Farm. The .Union force in the centre is Harrow with Hall and Smyth back on the ridge. Bottom right are part of Posey’s brigade. Wright is off table.

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View from Rebel side with Wilcox on left and Barksdale on the right. Our batteries are normally 2 gun batteries but we are short on guns(didn’t help I left box of them on Garage Table) so made them 1 gun batteries but tried to leave space as if were 2 bases. Opposite them are my 3 brigades from left to right of Carr/Brewster/Graham.

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Shot down table a a turn on……Rebs are advancing on fence line. Alan had some trouble getting his brigades going but got there.

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At this point I have to admit to throwing an amazing number of 5’s and 6’s in my first few turns of shooting. Barksdale brigade are like facing French Imperial Guard…they just keep coming….. having superior  morale and stamina makes them hard to hurt…and the Elite reroll on a 6 rather than 4+ was a blessing! We rated the fence as a -1 to hit from small arms fire.

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Being super troops Russ sent several in….you will note my lovely Zouaves have 6 casualty counters, but with the aid of 3 supports and double 6’s on the morale test from the combat , I survived. Am almost embarrassed to admit it, but I beat them in the next round of combat and they popped. You will see 3 casualties on the unit beside them……Russ all day was doing lots of damage with his guns where as mine were not so good.

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In centre Alan has a unit up on Rogers Farm. More coming into shot.

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A look down table from Alans position. Pauls(Goldie) reinforcement brigade of Webb can be seen moving up from behind the ridge. I am reaching across and moving my reserve brigade of Willard. McGilvray had managed to bring 1 reserve battery on. On the far top of screen is my unit of Berdans sharpshooters who had moved from behind Brewsters brigade to the open flank of Grahams brigade. I took this as a suicide mission with aim of drawing the fire of the 2 batteries out there from shooting at my line. Graham and Brewsters brigades have backed away from the fence line and with Barksdales brigade a bit worse for wear my aim of getting them out of medium/close artillery range and hopefully rally some morle back on some of the units.

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Here are the sharpshooters….much to my glee Russ sent a unit of Barksdales brigade hunting them as well…woohoo!!

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Russ has a shaken unit up against fenceline…..I have backed off my centre(1 whupped unit) with aim of rallying damaged units in second line. With commanders all 7’s needed keep them outside 12 inches enemy to not reduce them to 6’s. I was rolling 8’s….consistently. Wilcox can be seen advancing on road.

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Here is Alans troops lined up for the race to Cemetery Ridge.

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In centre Lang’s small brigade is in trouble. Paul has a unit heading into flank.

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A shot down lines…..far to many casualty counters and darn hard to rally any off. I decided to sacrifice my guns as speed bumps hold up Russ troops while tried to rally brigades. In background is McGilvrey frantically trying to bring those reserve guns on.

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Alan was taking the pictures so we have more shots of Russ v me. The top Reb unit against the fence is straight off my painting table…38th Virginia!

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I got all carried away and sent some units to try get Wilcox in the flank….these chaps then decided to be unsporting and interfere.

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Carr’s Union brigade still in place with the reinforcements of Willard rushing into the gap…..aim….scare Russ and shoot up the guns and also provide block to rally units behind from Brewster and Grahams brigades. Silly sods forgot to load their guns.

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Paul makes an impressive line against Alan’s Rebs. Alan does have a few guns at close range which is bound to hurt.

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Russ charges in again. Unusual site of a unit in attack column. Formed this way to make it through the gap.

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Shot down table……Alan still not over fenceline, Paul holding centre in advanced position, I have pushed more of Carr’s brigade across road and rest holding on. Far top the unit of Russ’s that was chasing my sharpshooters has beaten them and now turned back to main combat. Thankfully one of the reserve batteries had marched on ready to hold them off. By a miracle had rallied 2 of the shaken units to reduce risk of Graham/Brewster breaking.

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The end game. Rebels had reached high water mark and been held or pushed back. We called it time as hall was wanting to close but the day belonged to the Union(I am not biased…honest!).

Alan downloaded the photos for me and he left the picture below.

The start of his Carthaginian Army.

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An Update!

A small update.

Since the Aspern game we have had several games  where we are working through the new Black Powder ACW supplement ‘Glory,Hallelujah’. I have run 2 games based on scenarios from the book with some pictures from the ‘Bartletts Farm 1863’ scenario below. The rules have worked rather well and the games have the feel of an ACW period game. There have however been some discussions post last game around some issues which we are working through. These for us are number of guns represented on the table,we have used 1 gun per battery until now but are moving to 2 guns and 3 guns for the Union 6 guns batteries. There are also concerns around the difficulty in getting units to charge into battle but the more you read the more you understand battles were mainly firefights rather than mass hand to hand combats.

ACW1 a

 

ACW2 a

ACW3a

 

ACW4a

You may have noticed we try to have appropriate terrain in our games so ACW requires lots of trees and fences of varying types. The other night Paul G and Keith came round and we started a production line of fences. First offering in early stage picture is below. I have a Foundry ACW rulebook called ‘From Bull Run to Gettysburg’ which is just awesome with step by step instructions on how to make all types of  fences and even has tent templates.

Fences

2 types ACW fences under construction.The MDF is cut to 10cm long and 2.5cm wide. Plan is to undercoat brown,do some dry brushing,add flock,tufts etc.

 

And finally there are some pictures from an ancient game Brian Trott and I played last week using the ‘Hail Caesar’rules. Brian fielded his EIR v my Macedonians. My EIR are being rebased from WAB to ‘Hail Caesar’ so it is the unfinished and damaged from to many house moves Macedonians that were used. We fielded small armies to get a feel for the game. Standard sizes battles are fought between somewhere around 400 point armies.Brian fielded 270 points,I had 180. And yes I lost as Brian cleared both flanks of my Phalanx. Was fun and look forward more games. After loss consulted army list and identified what need to add to Macedonians to get to 400 points and also allow some variation in the army. So took advantage of Warlord Games buy 3 pay for 2 deal and ordered 3 boxes Companion cavalry. I have also assembled and undercoated a Warlord Games box 32 Macedonian Phalanx to give me a 3rd block. From Victrix I have I have added a unit of Hypastists and a box 56 skirmishers.These were ordered from Caliver as cheaper and no postage paid. Direct from Victrix I have ordered the decals.

Ancients 2a

Part of Brian’s EIR army. Back in early 2000’s we got similar forces,Craig painted and based them for PK for us. I am rebasing mine to similar sized bases.

 

Ancients 4a

Phalanx grinds on against legionnaires. Phalanx destroyed one unit but the Romans eliminated the flank supports.

 

Next week I have a game against friend Craig who is building a Greek army. It won’t be battle ready but we will use my troops and get handle of the rules.

Til next time.

Terry