Sunday, June 19, 2016

407 - 75th Anniversary TO HOLD ON HIGH

This past weekend was spent connecting with my old squadron, 407 "The Demon Squadron", in Comox.
face and reverse of the new 407 Squadron coin in enameled color

I was able to see the old (now called Block II) aircraft and learn that new (Block III) versions are busy out in the world.

There was a set of conversations about aircraft, issues of the past and present and an opportunity to dance with my lovely wife.

A new swag coin has been struck for the occasion.

I also had a few conversations with a veteran from the 1941-45 years of the squadron when the battle honors were earned.

sometimes the demon comes out in me

Perhaps I shall keep an eye out for the 80th anniversary.

Friday, June 17, 2016

75th Anniversary of 407 Squadron

Colours and awards of "The Demon Squadron"
This June 17, 18 & 19;  I shall be attending the festivities of the 75th Anniversary of 407 Squadron, where I served in 1989-1993.

Ideally I shall come away from the events with some more good memories.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Library games day - tabletop with Eagle Games

This past Saturday marked the final tabletop games day until the Autumn, probably September.

I took it as an opportunity to showcase some of the games that I have available for play.

only a sample of the games that could be brought out to the library games days
I had advertised that the Conquest of the Empire game was going to be the feature for the day.

As it was we had five fairly active players, sadly my middle son ended up with the unenviable position of being on the Italian peninsula having to face me and another older boy as adversaries.  My son did not 'reach out' for help in dealing with either of the sides (which could have pulled us back from a confrontation)  so my son ended up having to make other choices.

the digital world could not be contained

at the start of the conflict, we are all equal ...

The game was clearly going to end with Hispania as the leader, no final winner set, just not a clear way to stop me as Hispania.

Then a game of Napoleon In Europe was set out and a fast 'even Steven' game was run.

the gigantic map is always appreciated


just a little 'even Steven' followed by battles and territory grabs
This then ended the tabletop fun at the Library for the 2015-16 season, our first.

I am hopeful that many players will return and that we may see more in the Autumn of 2016.

Return to Afristan - The Sword and the Flame

On the mythical lost continent of Afristan the forces of Gran Bretan wage a series of campaigns to pacify the local populace.

This tale is of a Breton column that had the mission to destroy two rival native villages; the young Captain Davidson was to regret ever taking on such a task ...

The Bretons deploy, to take on the closer village first

massed in their red coats the right flank was tasked to escort a special wagon

though there were no visible native Dervish forces, the assembling red coats were being closely watched

the column moved through woods and slowly over open ground

the leading Ghurka formation was shot to bits and the Havildar was chopped down by a mob, which then rushed the next formation of colonial troops

another mob burst from the near village and again the rush was on, this time the mule teams were the target

Captain Davidson was unable to rally anyone from the head of the column, seeing even more native forces rushing towards is tiny force ...

this time the attackers were on camels

pouring over the hedges of the other small village

and on horseback pushing hard for the left flank of the Colonial forces column

the native mobs did take out 20+ in their rushing swarm

even more mobs showed up

the best troops kept moving too slowly to get into any kind of firing position

Breton die rolls for movement were atrocious ... could the tiny model men know more than the leader?

mobs, time and again were now holding back from closing into the kill

now though the camels were hammering into the flanks

and in the end the horsemen took the flank and rear of the Colonial forces

fleeing from their wagon-load of demolitions the red coats got away with only a dozen or so survivors from this column ... it would appear that Afristan was about to explode into open revolt.
Alex has decided that TSATF and the colonial game is not his 'cup of tea'.  It would also appear that there is more interest in larger black powder actions in the future for Jeff's table.

Saturday, June 04, 2016

More Squad Leader

the basic Guards Counterattack near the start with your author playing the Germans

second game in action, about turn 4 with your author as the Russians

Opportunity came up for a couple of games of Squad Leader with a new opponent.

plenty of tactics discussion and demonstration of defensive interlocking fire ... and when I went on the offensive with the Russian Guards, a demonstration of close assault tactics.

Fun afternoon.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Garden Wars Returns for 2016 - English Civil War: Warr Without an Enemie

On the Victoria Day Monday, 23 May 2016 I had the opportunity to run a rousing Garden Wars game of Warr Without an Enemie and put my English Civil War miniatures into action in the back yard.

Garden Wars returns in 2016
The scenario was built using the troop selection methods from the rules set by the Wyre Forest Gamers.

We ended up with rather large Horse forces and limited Pike and Shotte.  Indeed I pushed my collection of horse to the limits and beyond, as I have only been building a Parliamentary force and have just started on some Welshmen to begin a Royalist opposing force.  Indeed I was able to tap a Cossack contingent to finish up one of the Horse elements of the Parliament force.

I mowed out the lawn this time to show three woods areas and a set of hedgerow enclosed fields.

forests and hedges
 My opponent had not played ECW before, he has seen the pictures of Garden Wars and heard from others about the fun and as he had the time available we were able to throw down minis and have at on the field.

The field narrowed down to the left corner of the hedgerows here Parliament are deployed along the whole hedge line on the left of the image

Dragoons and "the Shepherds"

Royalist Welshmen

Royalist Welsh horse and foot

Parliament's lines before the town and out from the hedges

"The Shepherds"

Closer to the center of Parliament's positions, horse on the left

The Giant Welsh dragon flag was not to be missed.
First moves were all about getting the Royalist horse to drive deep into the right flank, while the dice rolls for the movement of the Royalist foot were terrible (lots of 1's).  Parliament was mostly happy to await the Royalist arrival.  Though the Dragoons and a regiment of Pike and Shotte, known as 'the Shepherds' did have to redeploy from the right flank to the left as quickly as possible as it was clear the Royalists were going to mass their attack on the left corner of the enclosed fields.

Parliament's position shifting

the Parliament commander

still more foot slogging through the fields towards the hedgerows

the command die rolls were low and this kept the foot commander falling back from his men

the foote brigade had problems keeping together

including crashing horse into the backs of the Dragoons

yes that is a Parliament regiment being used as a Royalist ... my forces are mostly Parliamentary

The Parliament Horse was in readiness to shoot up the advancing Royalist horse

the moves of the Royalist horse had them in Parliament's 'charge threat' range, yet not in pistol range for the Northern Horse which had been ordered to advance to fire range

many lines of Royalist horse were bearing down to rush into close pistol range
Turn 3 had no photos ... we were rushing to get the move in just in case it rained as the clouds were building.  Mostly it was Royalist horse being shot up and doing less to the Parliament horse while the Royalist Foote continued to press into the hedgerows.

hedgerow area turn 4

the corner of the hedgerows, Parliament horse lower left, Royalist horse upper left; Royalist Foote in the field still not quite at the hedgerows

the horse flank clash from behind the Royalist right flank

second line of Royalist Pike & Shotte as they close in on the hedgerows

now the two lines of Parliament horse had shot away and driven off the Royalist horse

at the edge of the hedges 'the Shepherds' were blasting away exchanging volleys with a group of Royalist Dragoons

the main Royalist line had emerged from the hedgerows into a hail of pistol and matchlock fire

clearly the Royalist horse were no where to be seen

more Parliament foote was advancing

while Parliament horse were screening and holding back Royalist pike & shotte at pistol range cycling in carrocole

Laird Guat Rage decided that after the loss of all of the Royalist horse it was better to retire from the field than lay down the lives of all of the foote as well
I am certainly happy with the turn out from the first game in the Garden Wars for 2016.