Monday 5 February 2024

Battle of Montgisard 1177 Lance and Longbow Game Vapnartak 2024

 It was Will McNally's turn to organize the Lance and Longbow Society participation game at Vapnartak 2024.  As usual for Will, he opted for 20mm/1/72nd scale plastic figures.  With the smaller scale, the table could accommodate more troops, which helped give the table an "epic" appearance.

Will had chosen Montgisard 1177 as his battle, one I'd heard little about before, but turns out to have been a major Crusader victory, thwarting Saladin's plans for the next decade.  A small Crusader force managed to surprise the Muslim army, with the result that they had to stream out of camp without the usual preparation of donning armor and forming up in the usual way.

Rules used were Lion Rampant, with some adjustments usual for the L&L participation game, with the main difference being that Crusader spearmen could opt to kneel, allowing the crossbowmen behind to fire over their heads - very nasty.

Saladin's right flank and part of the centre, with tented encampment behind.

Turcopole skirmishers on the Crusader's right flank.

And again for some reason.

Part of the Crusader centre, spearmen backed by crossbowmen.

Bedouin skirmishers on Saladin's left flank.

Turcopoles and Bedouins skirmishing.


Crusader mounted sergeants and knights.

Askaris from the Islamic army.

Crusader infantry pushing forwards.

Turcopoles, the closest unit being close to exhaustion.

More Crusader infantry.

Islamic infantry following up behind their mounted troops.

Knights about to charge Islamic Askari.  The Askari have beaten up the mounted sergeants which have been pushed back behind the knights, so they are no move this turn.

During the course of the day I played in one full game, and a half game where we just played one wing and I was assisted by a lovely young lady of 7 or 8 with some deadly dice rolling.  I also watched another game when I was able to take these pictures.  Will's forces looked great and there were lots of nice comments from players and passers by.  Lots of nice comments about his scratch built tented encampment.

Link to Will's Blog

I was relatively restrained, a box of Deus Vult Mongol horse archers to be used as Steppe/Nomad light horse allies for my Late Romans, some Monks and Pagan priests for my Late Romans and sub-Roman Brits, a handful of Cataphracti to finish off a unit for WAB and some mounted horn blowers for my Late Roman cavalry, plus a box of dice.  A great day out in good company. 

Saturday 20 January 2024

Another Late Roman outing

So, Thursday evening saw another outing for my Late Romans.  This time they were venturing way beyond their comfort zone as a Western army somewhere in the deserts of the Middle East, taking on the Sassanids.

My army was pretty much unchanged from last time except units were equipped with leaders and standards.  This meant dropping a bolt thrower, a unit of Lanciarii and combining 2 shock cavalry units of 15 figures into a single unit of 12, to bring points down to 2500.

Si's Sassanids included four units of clibinarii with saves of 2+, making them hard to kill.  There were also two units of spears/archer combined infantry, a unit of horse archers and another of Iranian mounted javelin men.  The powerful clibinarii ate up points, but were the M1/Challengers of the day.

Opening dispositions with no terrain from the random selection.

Mounted javelins and archers.

Those naughty clibinarii.

My heroic shock cavalry and light cavalry behind.

Legionnaires and Cataphracts.

The Roman right with more legions, bolt throwers and a rather rash unit of lanciarii.

No more lanciarii and one of the legions taking losses from the bow armed light cavalry.

Cataphracts chased off the skirmishers and crashed into the Persian centre infantry.

Charge and counter charge resulted in lots of drawn melee, which continued through turns 2 to 5.  Sadly, some disastrous dice rolls in turn 6 on the Roman left saw the cavalry and a legion fleeing, leaving no choice for the rest of the army but to withdraw.  It was satisfying to despatch the javelin horse on the right flank.  Much like the Roman's historically, one learned the power of those heavily armoured Persian horse.  I may have to give my Cataphracts bucklers, so they too save on 2+.  I also need some allied Hun horse archers.

A fun game, more progress on the WAB learning curve.  Now to finish the Christmas assembly line of Gripping Beast Cataphracts, Victrix armored legionnaires, archers and slingers and some Foundry sub-Romans to double up as cheap pedyts.

Thanks for looking.

Saturday 23 December 2023

28mm WAB action Late Romans vs a barbarian conspiracy.

Thursday night club  action.  My 28mm Late Romans taking on Si G's central European Barbarian hordes using WAB historical ancients rules.

Four legionary units and Cataphracts in the centre, 4 Scorpions, a unit each of Lanciarii and shock cavalry on the left, units of shock cavalry, horse archers and Lanciarii on the right.

I didnt pay for leaders for the cavalry or standards for any of the units, which meant I was one down on each combat, wont make that mistake again.  Now to source some Hun allies for their Parthian shot ability.

Fun to play and the table looked great.  The Barbarians definitely had the upper hand after 5 turns.

Thanks for looking.

Thursday 9 November 2023

Late Romans for WAB now in movement trays

 I've a couple of games of WAB booked for next month, so I dusted off last winter's project, my Late Romans and have spent the last couple of weeks finishing off some part complete units.  I had the front rank of these Wargames Atlantic Late Romans in Spangenhelms finished this time last year, but ran out of steam with the rest of the unit.  So, I finished the second rank and added a third rank of Gripping Beast archers.  This will be my elite infantry unit.  The officer is "Arthur", purchased from Col Bills.  The shield design is generic, derived from on of the illustrations in Fall of the West.

The Herculiani Seniores, the only historical unit I know as I used decals from The Baggage Train for their shields.  All figures are Gripping Beast.

A mix of Gripping Beast and Wargames Atlantic figures provide another unit of pedites in a darker green uniform.  Shield design is again a hand drawn generic version based on Fall of the West.

Gripping Beast figures in vermillion with plain pale blue shields, based on an illustration from the Notitia Dignitatum. 

And finally, for now, a pair of newly painted Scorpions, ready to keep elephants at bay, or at least enrage them, or to provoke warbands into attacking.  These are from Wargames Foundry and kindly sent to me by Richard Phillips (many thanks Mr P).

Movement trays are from Warbases.  I tried to purchase these at a show, but was disappointed to find out they don't carry them to shows, so had to order by mail.  Still, postage was reasonable and turn around very quick.

I have another set of Scorpions and a handful of Gripping Beast unarmoured pedites, which I'm painting as marines, to be used as skirmishers.  I also have a box of Cataphracts, although I suspect they may not be ready in time for December, so my Goth heavy cavalry will probably have to serve in their place.  Finally, an impulse buy from the last show was a bag of sub-Roman pedites from Col Bills, 12 spearmen, musician, standard bearer and commander.  I might do these in a less uniform set of more homespun colours, with a view to using them as sub-Roman or as Limitanii or Romanized foederatii (apparently Romanitas was much prized even among "barbarian" tribes picking over the spoils of the collapsing western empire).

As ever, thanks for looking.

Tuesday 10 October 2023

15mm DBA Lysimachid Army

The club is seeing a bit of renewed interest in DBA and opted for a c. 300BCE period for armies to take part in a mini tournament.  I bought a couple of armies from Museum Miniatures, this one, a Lysimachid army and another Scythian army which is in the pipeline.   

The Lysimachids came with 4 bases of Phalangites (pike), 3 bases of Hoplites (Spear), a general's base of knights, a light horse base and three bases of psiloi.  I added some extras, 2 bases of auxilia (Bulgarian) spearmen (Ax4) and two of Thracians (Ax3) plus another Psiloi of Thracians, an elephant with tower and a pack of mules for a baggage base.  Gives me enough bases for the early and late Lysimachid periods with several options within each period.

The whole army.

War elephant, hoplites and Bulgarian auxilia.

Phalangite pike blocks, hoplites, General/Knights and Psiloi.

Baggage train, Thracian light auxilia, light horse and Psiloi.

A quick paint to get them in action as soon as possible, ready for the tourney in November.

Thanks for looking.

Thursday 3 August 2023

20mm WW1 Turks in green

 Will offered to share the excess WW1 Ottoman Turks from his ebay win, so I took up his offer.  These are Hat figures painted up in green, using a recipe from Mark Hargreaves book.

I am quite pleased with the faded look and will probably have at least enough to do another 3 or 4 similar groups, although I'm tempted to try some of the other recipes in the book.

Nearly finished the 28mm DAK infantry and then on to their vehicles and some support weapons.

Thanks for looking.

Thursday 6 July 2023

Some 20mm WW1 and RCW progress

Trying to sort out some of the projects that have stalled and make some progress, I dug out various bits and pieces to complete.

First up, a bargain bits box miscast from Early War Miniatures at one of the shows.  It's a Mk 9 troop carrier - plenty of space on top to add some stowage at some point.

Also from EWM, this mounted Hotchkiss LMG team with crew in Solar helmets for the Middle East.

And the dismounted LMG team.

And finally, some Strelets dismounted Australian cavalry ready to do service as dismounted Camel Corps troopers.

I've got a couple of bags of assorted Turkish WW1 infantry in kolpaks and arab headress, an ebay win split with Will, with some Turks in green uniforms next off the table.

Thanks for looking.