Wednesday, 9 October 2019

Ebor Lard II Part 2 The Virgin and The Rearguard

So having finished off the Trumpton game, we retired to the bar area for sandwiches, a very nice lunch indeed and we re-convened for the afternoons entertainment.  Mark would be playing the Indian Mutiny game and I was playing the Mexican Adventure.

This is a historical period I have always fancied and read a little bit about, the lack of figures has been my main reason for delay. Gringo 40'S have some gorgeous figures but its a limited range and the figures don't mix well with other ranges be very big. Richard who ran this game had overcome this by converting Perry Plastic American Civil War figures and I have to say the effect was very good indeed.

Zoaves for the most part need a different paint job to become Turco's. The Contra Guerrilla's needed a bit more imagination but a soft fez head added to a US cavalryman looks great, with the same approach for the Contra foot. The Liberals are all from the Mexican range from Foundry as are the Legion skirmishers.

Richard explained the premise of the game really well, giving us a brief historical background followed by a tablet presentation with maps on the strategic situation we found ourselves in.

The Conservatives and French had pinned the Liberal army against the see in the North East and hoped to envelope and destroy them.

In the meantime an irregular force had sneaked through the Conservative lines carrying something precious on a mule train, this force was followed by Contra Guerrilla's intent on catching it.

The Liberals would break camp and try to break out whilst a small rear guard held a ridge to allow their escape.

So the scene was set, I was the Liberal regulars with the job of holding the ridge, Grant had the French regulars who needed to push me off. Steve led the Liberal irregulars with the precious cargo and Jeremy had the Contra Guerrillas. Forces were as follows.

Grants French

A formation of 3 x 8 Turco's
One skirmish unit 6 Foreign Legionaries
One Gun and 6 crew

Jeremy's Contras

A formation of 2 x 8 foot
One unit of 8 Cavalry
One small mountain gun and 4 crew

My Liberals

A formation of 2 x 8 State Militia
A formation of 3 x 8 Regulars
One unit of 8 Lancers

St eves Irregulars

Skirmishers 2 x 6
Militia one unit of 8
Mule train

For more detail see the Liberal  briefing sheets below, sorry it seemed a bit like cheating to photograph the briefing's of my adversaries.

Deployment for my Liberals would be around the crest of the ridge, Steve was just outside the village, Jeremy would be straight opposite Steve and Grant opposite me.
My stuff is first out and I deploy behind the hill where I am safe from artillery, as Grant points out, just like Wellington. The foot are actually just behind the crest but the hill is steep so I stick them at the bottom to stop them sliding and getting damaged.

Steve is next and quickly deploys into the village, his objective is to climb the church tower and unfurl the banner. If this seems familiar well it was lifted by Richard straight from Sharpe's Rifles, the difference bring that the inspiration for the banner is in fact a real banner the Banner of the Virgin De Guadeloupe.

The Contra push straight into the other side of the village whilst their cavalry cut right looking for ground that will suit them better.

Lastly the French pile on heading straight for the ridge with no messing about. The game is afoot!
It takes another two or three goes through the pack for the French and Contras to get themselves forward, I keep my troops safe behind the ridge whilst Steve deploys into the houses of the village and tries to batter down the door of the tower and Jeremy occupies houses to fire into the irregulars.

Finally its time to deploy onto the crest and now I need to hope my card comes out first.
Jeremy gets his mountain gun into a good spot to cover the village only to find that the wall is too 
high to fire over and he must move it again.

His Contras are however now in position to fire at Steves irregulars.
The Turcos fire first and the shock is already starting to pile up on my Militia.
Fortunately the next card is my regulars and we volley the gun and the Contra Cavalry, Grant manages to save all the hits on the gun but we put 5 shock on the Contras which will hopefully come in handy later.

Next out is my lancers and they pile forward into position to charge the Contra Cavalry, I am hoping to reach them before the legion can get to the edge of the wood and fire into me.
This turns out to be a poor plan, the Contras have repeating carbines and fire a devastating volley into me, followed by the gun and then to finish things off the Legion skirmishers. Its all I can do to hang on to the cavalry at all.

However my regulars are able to fire again and this time the gun takes some hits as well as the Contra Cavalry.
The return fire from the Turco's again causes significant shock on my state militia who are already starting to look shaky.
In the village the mountain gun is now in position but Steve is working hard not to give Jeremy any targets and the church tower door is beginning to splinter.
My cavalry have withdrawn and so have the Contra Cavalry so its now a slogging match between our infantry and the Gun, as its behind cover this is really difficult to hit. We are doing damage but the damage on the state militia is mounting up quicker an they are on the verge of breaking. My consolation is that the gun crew is starting to take casualties too.
Finally Steve batters down the tower door, streams up the steps and unfurls the banner of the Virgin De Guadeloupe. I hadn't known it to start with but the sight of the banner immediately lifts all shock from the units that are able to see it (pretty much everything except my cavalry) the State Militia which had looked on the verge of collapsing is now back in the game. For me we are only half way through but this is probably a game changer fro the Conservatives, I don't think they can come back from this. Fair play though they are determined to try.
Grant re-aligns his Turco's so all three units are firing at the two State Militia, and whilst these fellas have no shock they do have 4 casualties already. My regulars now only have one target left unless they move, the gun.

I get some furtherluck here as the guns hits with 5 dice but I manage to save the whole lot. The return volley from the regulars takes the gun crew down to just two figures so it will now take three actions to re-load, essentially they cant fire for another two turns.

The Militia fire into the Turco's and Grant returns my favour and saves the lot. Within two moves he has piled the shock back onto the state militia and first one then the other breaks.
I re-align my regulars and I can now hit the Turco's as well as the gun.  Steve's Militia have lined the edge of the town and are firing in to the urco's flank.

Jeremy's Contras are still pretty much intact and nipping at the heals of Steve's irregulars but they cant undo the damage done by the banner and the Turco's are now starting to take too much damage to stand a chance of capturing the hill, the Conservatives accept defeat at this stage and we all shake hands after an action packed and fun game. Thanks very much gents for a fantastic afternoon.
Every one packs up and prepares to re-convene at the pub for a curry, unfortunately Mark s driving and has plans so we need tO get off and say our farewells to a great bunch of guys.

Mark has had an equally entertaining game of Indian Mutiny which he regales me with all the way home, below are a few of his snaps of the game.

A thoroughly enjoyable day all round we will definitely be returning next year, a massive thank you to John Savage for organising it and for all the guys who put games on, the level of work put into the games was phenomenal, cheers.


  1. Good work! Yet more SP action I've sadly missed out on ;-) Cheers, Chris

    1. We should rectify that Chris, happily we have the means to do so.

    2. Whoop! Need to arrange a game

    3. Ready when you are, Mark is already painting up Indian Mutiny for Sharp Practice!

    4. Maybe something more 'normal' before try Apaches and Mexicans? Hopefully see you soon mate

  2. Thanks for playing and for the write-up Roger.

    One minor tweak. The door to the bell-tower wasn’t locked! The guerrillas just took the departing Father Diego’s word for it that it was! He was a conservative but was prepared to dissemble in an attempt to slow down the guerrillas.

    1. Ah I see, sorry Rich and thanks again for the game, great fun.