Thursday 31 August 2023

Midgard Bronze Age Playtest

 We had a game at East Leeds tonight to test the changes to James Moriss's forthcoming rules for heroic warfare, Midgard.

We have play tested these three times now and thoroughly enjoyed them, but there have been changes as they get nearer to publication so we wanted another go with the latest version.

I still dont have enough figures to get the best from the rules which can be used for very large battles indeed, I do have plenty left to paint, but otherwise we think they are good fit with their focus on rewarding the heroic behaviour of the Leaders and Champions and optional extra rules for magic, enhanced weapons, Shamen casting curses etc..

Chris Flowers would command a smaller force holding a hill. He has A level 3 leader and a level 1 and level 2 Champion, 2 units of javelin armed skirmishers, 1 of archers, 1 of light cavalry, 2 of warriors and 1 of Warriors Heavy Infantry. Thats those chaps in decent gear at the front with swords and axes.

My force was slightly larger.. I have the same levels of leader with level 3 Battle Queen Maive leading a level 1 and 2 champion. The other troop types I have one more of each than Chris other than the Warriors Heavy Infantry and Javelins. So 2 Light Horse, 2 archers, 2 javelins, 3 warriors, really this should more than offset the advantage of the hill. Let see.

The aim of the game is to deplete your opponents reputation whilst increasing your own through winning or losing melees or single combats, points can also be added for making the first charge of the game or charging your leader into melee. Adding in optional rules for magic etc can also give an extra layer to those games where this is appropriate. Clearly when units or champions are defeated this leads to loss of reputation. 

A silver goblet with jewels to represent your reputation is recommended, we made do with coffee mugs and curtain rings.

Chris wanted a photo so I decideed I needed a photo of him taking a photo of me, childish I know!
Game commences and immediately Chris Issues a challenge from his commander to mine, naturally I accept and we meet in the middle of the armies to conduct our duel.

Purely for visual purposes I swapped the Hero's on foot for the same figures riding in Chariots, I think our duel requires some more Panache.
After three rounds of combat both leaders retire having gained reputation points and both having their stamina reduced by one. Tiring work all this heroic posturing you know.

Lugh of the silver spear has come to take enemy heads, heres one he prepared earlier!

Back behind her army Queen Maeve urges them on and the army advances.
Each unit moves once, all measurements are in spear throws which is also a unit frontage, hence the movement trays. Foot move one Spear throw and mounted move two. Units can also attempt to move a second time needing a command roll, its fairly easy passing on a 3 plus, leaders and champions can also spend points to re-roll fails although move one this is not needed and all my forces leap forward two spear throws (four for mounted)

My right flank Cavalry are not quite close enough to reach Chris's light horse.
My other cavalry unit swings around the flank of Chirs;s forces led by my level 1 champion
Chris's turn and he charges my light cavalry, his level 1 Champion issues a challenge and beats my level 2. Damn!
His Light Cavalry also beats mine and reduces its stamina, but we pass our morale.
Chris turns his archers to fire at my passing horse without success, I chance a long range shot and take on point of stamina from him.
Our Javelinmen advance to exchange short range missile fire..
Chris chares my light horse with his warriors and our hero's engage in single combat, again Chris manages to win both combats, killing a second champion and damaging my light horse.
My javelins have made amess of Chris's but now he charges his Heavy Warriors and my Javelins evade.

Chris has the edge here as he has hit my ordinary Warriors first and they become my primary unit.
As the melee begins our Leaders ride into single combat again and you guessed it Chris kills the last of my Champions who is also the leader of my force and my reputation pot is lookign decidedly empty.

The battlefield is a waste of piled corpses as very few units remain at all and virtually none are left completely intact. 
One last roll of the bones with an even chance of beating Chris, 3 fives should do he rolls 4 sixes! Thats it my reputations points are gone and Chris takes the victory.
We call it a night, all of my Champions are dead, all my reputation is gone and most of my troops are food for the crows.

Chris's dice have been fabulous, even when I rolled well he rolled slightly better.

Fair play though , the Gods favoured Chris's troops this day.

Another good test for Midgard passed with flying colours, I really need to consider how I am basing the rest of this collection now to get the best out of them. Food for thought.

Saturday 26 August 2023

3d Printing 40mm

I have been keen to find extra figures I can use and in particular I had been quite enthused by the new Hesse-Darmstadt troops by Piano Miniatures.

So after speaking to Paul at Sabotag3d, he was happy he could scale the 28mm files up to 40mm so I took the plunge and bought a couple of STL files.

The first test figure is back, looks lovely, maybe increase the size by 2mm but other than that really pleased, a good fit with the slightly larger Perry figure here.

Paul sent me a couple of shots before posting, I was warned that some of the sculpting might feel deep and you can see that on parts of the trousers on this figure, you can see the deep sculpting around the groin and knees, all told I think its going to look well.
Lovely so next step is to prime these two up and paint them. 
The cut of the uniform suits Poles as well as the Hessians but also Spanish if I can remove the head and replace with Spanish bicornes.
This first one has painted up really well, takes the paint well and I think looks great.
I have a few images with the yellow welt on the trousers so going to mix some of these in I think.
Not quite as brittle as expected, the bayonets have a decent bend and sprint in them which will possibly make them as or more robust than metals. Overall really pleased so looking forward to getting the rest and completing a unit.

The Hessians are coming! After a bit of too-ing and fro-ing to get the size right (it took a while and printed few too big to start with. Hessians are on their way and hopefully ready to share some finished figures soon.

I have these figures on the painting table now and they are lush, great that the 3d printing gives me some more options to increase the rang of figures in 40mm.

As mentioned, the uniform cut for the Hessians is very similar to the Spanish so I had a couple done without heads so I could add separate heads for some variety. Below are two with Spanish heads, of course the Bonnet de Police could still be a Hessian or even a Pole but probably wont be.

Hopefully this lot will give me at least a 24 man Hessian unit, possibly 32, plus additional figures for my Spanish as I plan another unit or too.

The project, as usual, has taken on a life of its own and I almost have enough for Brigade level games in 40mm rather than the Sharp Practice large Skirmishes initially envisaged.

As always watch this space for developments.

Wednesday 16 August 2023

Elizabethan English Based

With rules decided for Elizabethan Ireland I needed to rebase my forces.

The Irish will need to wait a little longer, I have some new figures to paint and they will need mixing in with those I already have but the English are almost done (Barring a unit more of Bills and some more Demi Lancers) I also have a unit of Demi-lancers un based as I intend to mix them with the new purchases from Redoubt.

You will also note that I have added static grass to the bases to give them a greener look, it is the Emerald Isle after all.

So first company complete is Demi-Lancers along with a mounted Command figure.

Next the two units of billmen, both very nice, the Darlo figures perhaps edging the Foundry here. You will notice I am putting command figures at the rear of bases to give them the appearance of virtual third rank, a trick we used on the Swedes in the Great Northern War collection. I think it works well.
Four companies of Pike.
The big bases give room for some diorama hence the nice log at the edge on this one.
Most of the tufts are retrieved from the original individual bases and these new bases need less tufts to flesh out the static grass.
Nice to have a unit in full armour including tassets, these could potentially be the gentlemen pike that get a bit of bonus in Irregular Wars. 
4 units of Border horse, these tough reivers must have found service in Ireland depressingly familiar.
These are all from the Jim Bowen range now Timeline, characterful chunky figures. Three horsemen per base works really well..
Timeline only really do 2 horses and the vast majority are all the same so I have used Redoubt horses to give me some variety.

We then have 5 units of Shotte, various manufacturers. Not much room on the bases for more than the grass.
Two ranks of three with command at the back feels right for these guys.
This next one is a unit of rogues, I imagine these as the flotsam of some jail in England given a musket and bundled off to Ireland.

This next is probably my favourite of the English Shotte, nice mix of figures.
This next is the heavy muskets, the rules dont differentiate but the heavy muskets like these did have a longer range giving the English an advantage of Irish shotte where they used these, a use to ponder for future games.
Lastly for the Shottey a base of mainly Assault Group Dutch figures, very nice these.
I based this chap up at the same time, an Irish Warlord with stolen battered Morion.
Lastly there is the gun, a small field piece, perhaps a Drake, fits well on the base. Completely immobile in the game will ned to consider how we use this.
So that's the majority of the English complete. I have another unit of Bills to paint and a unit of Demi-lancers to base up, with two more units coming from Redoubt. I may also invest in a further unit of Border horse and I have another commander to finish, but very nearly there for the English forces.

Before I base the Irish I have some more painting to do of figures I want to mix in with the already complete units.

Thanks for stopping by,