In which I blog about my miniature wargaming and whatever else takes my interest!

In which I blog about my miniature wargaming and whatever else takes my interest!

Friday, July 29, 2022

Fast Grenadiers

With the addition of 2 more boxes of infantry I decided that I could add a battalion of grenadiers to my Prussian infantry. 

In 1813 the grenadiers were in the infantry divisions and not concentrated in a strategic reserve so a battalion or two is entirely appropriate. 

The only thing marking them as grenadiers are the tiny mustaches and different coloured shoulder straps. Maybe I should give them tufts too.

I thought the officer in his feldmutz was unique so I based him as a single to give me another Big Man.

I got these stalwart fellows painted in one week plus another day for basing. Hopefully I can keep that pace up.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Looking Good Even in Defeat

Scott has loaned me With Eagles to Glory by John H. Gill, which is proving to be a very good read. Gill's book sets out to correct the poor rating that the German troops always get in other histories and by extension wargames rules. He digs into regimental diaries and examines obscure actions which get overlooked as people rush off to Aspern and Wagram, to show that given their chance, the German troops fought as well and as hard as the French. The chapter on the Bavarians, covering in exquisite detail the Bavarian army's activities during 1809 has provided a lot of  scenario ideas and further encouragement to me to build some 1809 appropriate Austrians to fight them. 

I was thinking it would be interesting to try an unbalanced scenario, with my Bavarian division covering the withdrawal of their baggage against larger numbers of Austrians. Hillier's counterattack at Neumarkt or something like that. Probably would make a better Sharp Practice game, but Scott doesn't have any separate Big Men, so we went with General d'Armee.

Bavarian deployment. 1st brigade will fall back covered by 2nd brigade and then take up secondary position in village on the right.

Hordes of Hapsburgs

Hans and Franz anchor 1st brigades left flank in a village

2nd brigade artillery and cavalry cover the gap

2nd brigade

I'm winning the skirmish firefight

1st brigade artillery. First shots put a bunch of hits on an Austrian fusilier battalion, they fail their Discipline Test and take more hits and retreat.

Austrian cavalry arrive!

Things were going fine. I was going to limber my guns, give the white coats a volley from my fusiliers and then start retiring to the secondary fall back position. Scott's 12 pounder battery is given "Artillery Assault" orders, adding 2 Casualty Dice (on a 4, 5 or 6 they add an extra casualty to whatever the result is on the firing chart) to their roll. Scott rolls:
Ouch baby... very ouch.

So I've taken 5 hits on the battery in one turn! The double 6s causes a Destiny Test. Scott rolls. An explosion has killed my Brigadier causing the Brigade to Falter. So I have to send one of my 2 available ADCs to the brigade to rally them at the start of the next turn. I roll a 1. "Sauve Qui Peut!" goes up across the ridge. My skirmish line disperses. Every unit takes 2 hits and retires. So my battery is now over the limit and disperses as well. Plus I permanently lose 1 of my 3possible ADCs.

Well bugger.


My baggage got away, but recovering the wreck of 1st brigade and extricating everyone over the bridge before the Austrian cavalry arrives would be bloody.

A very short game. But it looked good.

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Prussian Fusiliers

Those two boxes of Perry plastic Prussians that I was gifted have generated 2x 16 figure battalions of Musketeers with command, and 3x 16 figure battalions without command groups who will be painted as Fusilier battalions. Each Prussian line infantry regiment had 2 battalions of Musketeers and 1 battalion of Fusiliers with black belting and given some skirmish training. My Bavarians and Russians have a few battalions without command groups and they aren't that annoying on the tabletop. Painting these as Fusiliers, who as far as I can ascertain, didn't carry flags anyway, fills a gap in my Prussian Order of Battle.

While working on the Fusiliers I also did this trio of Perry metal senior officers which were part of the original birthday present from Scott that kicked off the whole expansion of my "simple little Sharp Practice project."

They are all one piece castings, which surprised me. But I don't mind one piece mounted models. Makes assembly easy at any rate.

I quite like this fellow.

This one too.

This chap is OK, but filled in gap between shako and sabre had to be thought about. Too thick to carve out. I tried and damaged the tip of the sabre a bit.

So more mounted Big Men of Sharp Practice, or I can have lots of brigades for General d'Armee, once I finish painting all of them at any rate.

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

So This Happened....

 A few weeks ago an old friend, who had moved out of Province and lost touch 14 or 15 year ago, called out of the blue.

"I'm getting out of Wargaming. I'm going to send you a box."

A couple of weeks later, this arrives.

Oh dear.

Scott added in the Austrian cavalry set. So now I have a pretty good sized army of Austrians, less artillery.

If my back of an envelope math is correct I'd have 14 or 15 battalions of assorted infantry and two units of cavalry. The Victrix boxes come with 2 mounted commanders each, so there's brigade and army command sorted. Just need artillery, and limbers, and a caisson.

And hussars.

The rational part of my brain says "just do enough for Sharp Practice, you fool!"

16 Grenadiers, 16-24 line infantry, 16-24 Landwehr, 12 skirmishers, 8 dragoons some Big Men. 

Simple, right?


Perhaps I'll start with a Sharp Practice force for 1809 to fight my Bavarians and see how I get on. Fortunately both the Perry and Victrix sets have lots of command, so getting enough Big Men won't be an issue.

The observant will notice to the right some French Middle Guard in greatcoats and two boxes of Perry Prussians, plus a partial set of Perry British flank company without it's box. I've already started on the Prussians, these extras will provide much needed Fusilier battalions. I had, for a few days, thought of converting the French in greatcoats to Lutzow's Freikorps with extra Prussian heads, but shaving off epaulets would be tedious, so I shan't bother. I'll donate the French and British to the Hot Lead Bring & Buy.

This is Phase 5, or maybe Phase 4B, of my Big Plan now I guess.

Wagram, anyone?

Sunday, July 3, 2022

Victory out of Defeat

I was in such a celebratory mood, I had a beer.

Had an absolutely brilliant game of General d'Armee last night with Scott. My year and a half of intensely focused painting of 28mm Napoleonics bore some good fruit last night. Except for one regiment of French lancers brought to even things up a bit, all of the figures on table are mine.

Game is set during the spring of 1813. The Bavarians are facing a combined force of Prussians and Russians somewhere in Central Germany. I took the Bavarians. Dice rolls determined choice of table edge and who set up first. I won the first, and lost the second.

Detaching light companies to make my skirmish screen

Prussians all together


Allied cavalry brigade. They spent a lot of the game "hesitant". Mom had to get some quarters to get their horses moving.

Russian brigade, who also spent a lot of the game "Hesitant" as well.

Allied massed artillery

Prussian brigade

Skirmishers dispute a belt of trees

Skirmishers dispute the town

My cavalry threaten the Prussian flank. It will take three charges before that battalion of musketeers is ridden down!

Moving up my artillery because limbers are cool

FR Wahl taking fire from the Russian artillery. Caissons and supply wagons are cool too. The Bavarian battery used the "Artillery Assault" orders a lot in counter battery to eventually destroy the Russian battery.

Hammering the Prussians. One Prussian battalion is routed.

Russian grenadiers push their way through the belt of trees while Allied cavalry finally start moving to envelope my right flank!

Continuing to hammer Prussians on my left though

Cavalry threatening Prussian flank

Wheel my artillery to fire on the Allied cavalry, with the "Artillery Assault" order and roll really quite well (the Tolkien graphics are '6'). The Lithuanian uhlans are within a hit or two of being dispersed.

The uhlan charge fails and they are driven back, but the grenadiers from the other side destroy the Bavarian square.

2 other Bavarian battalions are retreated or routed, so that brigade is now "Faltering" status.

Even though Scott was plagued by bad ADC and brigade rolls, when his troops finally got moving, my right was overwhelmed by weight of numbers. When my right wing went to "Faltering" it was time to concede the table and retreat before the badly mauled Allied cavalry got itself sorted out.

Although I lost the game, I consider it a victory because I had a really great time and felt I could win up until the last couple of turns, and most importantly, I finally put on the table the sort of Napoleonic battle that I think 11 year old me was dreaming about.

Scott and I also have a pretty good handle on the General d'Armee rules too, so things rolled along pretty smoothly and set up to good byes was just over 4 hours.

This gaming break has me reinvigorated to work on more Prussians and Russians.