Friday, 31 March 2017

Crimean War Bits and Pieces

I’m nearly there with my Crimea collection.  Just a few squadrons of cavalry and some more command bases and three battalions of French infantry and I’m done.

Here are some British command bases the figures are mostly from Irregular. I’m pleased with how they came out.  You can probably guess who’s supposed to be who give or take a forearm.

Some British artillery (Minifigs) and Rifles (Irregular).

One of 5 new Russian Battalions.

And a couple of bases of Chinese from Irregular which I bought out of curiosity.  They will do for anytime between the Opium War and the Boxer Rising once I get the flock off that chap’s trousers.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

More Minifigs than ever

I now have more Minifigs than ever I had when they had a near monopoly on 15mm Gaming.  Partly I have come to appreciate their virtues and also, I cannot resist a bargain.  So here are my latest Crimean additions.

I’ve done the rosters, as we Piquet types say, for a ‘Not the Alma’ game and I’m hoping it will be a good one. 

It’s an interesting exercise in many ways. Most of the British, and some of the French are armed with the rifled musket-a huge advantage. I’m allowing a couple of Russian battalions the same but for most of the Russians effective firepower is a close- range affair. Not that they were all bad shots, they were trained to aim low and a quick look at the casualties they inflicted shows they could cause punishment.

Their artillery was probably the best of all the armies involved.  There was a draw- back, Russian standing orders forbade allowing the capture of their guns.  Accordingly, artillery units had an alarming tendency to retreat when the enemy got close, thus sparing the foe devastating canister fire. I might reflect this in the game any enemy within 200 yards and there will be a 50% chance of the Russian guns retiring.

Rating the various units is for me a work in progress, for the present Russian artillery, Zouaves,  Chasseurs and Highlanders are getting the highest rating. At the moment the rest of the British, French and Russians, and perhaps Turkish, are simply regulars. 

Command for everyone but the French is often thought woeful, I'm thinking that may be over simple so time to ponder. 

Oh, and I’ve made the Cossacks adequate fighters but quick to scarper.

I’m hoping the game will clarify my thinking especially around British Guards (Campbell more or less implied they should be shot for retreating) and the cavalry who were full of dashing courage but not particularly deadly.  The Russian cavalry were made up of good enough material but timidly used and again seemingly not very deadly in combat. The French Guards might get an uplift as might General Scarlett and some others. It’s the beginning of a learning curve as we used to say.

One thing I'm decided on is that the story of the upcoming game will be told through the eyes of the individual Brigadiers involved.

Monday, 6 March 2017

My Prussian Dragoons Are Done

Blue Moon cavalry come with enough figures for three units so of course I have three units of everything with a horse.  More than I might have chosen if I’m honest, still now they're all done.  

So here are the Von Normann Dragoons

The Von Blankensee Dragoons

And of course the Truchseb Dragoons that I finished earlier. 

That's it as far Prussian Dragoons go for me.  They do look nice though.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

A Holiday Book or two

I often think good books make for good games. 

A good book packed with primary sources will tell you the actuality of how an army fought.  You know, the sort of little details that make a game genuinely interesting.

Carlists for example were like mountain goats speedily going where others could not, the Cristinos in the main were not so swift and the lads of the BAL (British Auxiliary Legion) were plodders by comparison.  It’s the sort of knowledge that gives us period flavour on the table.

I recently bought a bunch of Minifigs Crimean figures (An eBay bargain) you can see some of them on this page.  I think the Turks are particularly nice.  

So now I’m keen to play a Crimean Game and while I wait for the paint to dry I’m rereading my Crimean War Books.

So finally getting to the point of this post, if you’re interested in the Crimean War or just looking for a good read to while away a sun kissed hour I’d suggest getting either or both of the following:

The Destruction of Lord Raglan by Christopher Hibbert

The Crimean War: A Re Appraisal by Phillip Warner

Like my Ebay Minifigs they are great value and you won't regret it.