Friday, April 29, 2011

The Dangers of Historical Gaming

Hi Folks,

I've been pondering what to do as my next Impetus army, and I have found out that one of the dangerous traps of this historical war gaming lark is that there is just so much history!

From biblical chariot races to massed legions and the push of pike there are so many different periods that Impetus can cater too, and so many new 28mm Plastics coming out that the aspiring historical gamer is literally spoilt by (not for) choice.   I can see the slippery slope that is a magpie like collection and the eventual fiscal madness of collecting entirely metal armies...

So given I tend to suffer from spontaneous army buying I have decided I need a few rules:

  1. No more the two armies per period, and if two preferably "adversary armies".  For Ancients this means I have my Romans and my Germans.  I am sorely tempted by Palmyra, Dacians and Sassinids but have to draw the line somewhere!
  2. Max size of Army to be 500pts.  Armies larger then this cant really be used on a 6' by 4' table anyway, even with our 8cm frontage, and should contain all the options I want regardless
  3. Finish at least 300pts of one army BEFORE starting the next - or they wont get finished!
And if I stick to this, I shouldnt go mad, or be buried under a mountain of unpainted plastic and metal and may even finish the odd army!


I'm sorted for Ancients but alot of people seem to be getting into their Dark Ages armies.  I'm thinking:

Normans seem like my sort of army, brutish and unenlightened (compared to the Saxons anyway!) but undeniably effective :P Plus they should be able to take on Jamie's Viking's on even terms, even with their Shieldwall in place. 

After a bit of list frothing I reckon I will work towards getting the first 300pts soonish.  I thinking;
  • Fair General
  • 1 CP Milites Upgraded (VBU7) General unit
  • 5 CP Milites (Mounted Norman Knights)
  • 2 CL Breton light cavalry units with Javelins
  • 1 CL Mounted Crossbow unit
  • 3 FP Heavy Infantry (Norman Spearmen)
  • 1 T Crossbow unit
  • 1 S Upgraded (VBU3) Breton Javelin unit
  • 1 S Breton Javelin unit
This is 300pts on the dot and VDT 30!  The FP Heavy Infantry are VD2 for 12pts (because they are crap) but they add alot to the Breakpoint for very little cost so should help keep the army on the field after the inevitable casualties when the Knights rampage out of control.

War and Peace Games has lots of Normans and are just over the ditch in Australia so postage shouldn't be too bad (though Malestrom has spoiled this with free postage worldwide, so I resent paying ANY postage now!) so it shouldn't be too long before I can afford to the army.  The Crusader Miniatures models look very well done, though the proof will be in the painting!

Watch this space!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Impetus Demo Games @ Natcon 2011

Hey Folks,

Craig, Jamie, Kent and I hosted a couple of Impetus Demo games at the NZ National Wargaming Tournament in Christchurch on Friday.

Craig and Kent played a 500pt First Crusades vs Syrians game as see on Craig's blog here, below is a shot of the desert action as it started
Jamie and I played a 400pt aside Romans vs Ancient Germans game set in the wintry depths of the Germanic Forests.  The Roman Commanders report to the Emperor can be seen here

We managed to get through two games, with the first one being pretty decisive...

 A hairy German eye view of the Roman lines
 The Romans Right is held by Praetorian, the Centre has massed Auxilia and Legion while the Sarmatian Heavy Cavalry holds their Left. I deploy my massed Infantry facing the Roman Center while most of my Cavalry and Macemen face the Praetorian. The Sarmatians are only faced by a single Medium Cavalry unit and some skirmishers

 The German Horde swarms forwards...
 And the Auxilia (on opportunity) counter charge. 
Bloody melee results in Jamie not being able to roll any hits, but being awesome at rolling "6's" for Cohesion tests...the flank Auxilia are driven back in disarray, with the warband on the right overrunning into a Raw Legion and driving them back too.  The Center Auxilia drives back two of my units however.
 This is the final photo I took of the first Battle.  The Sarmatian flankers were intercepted by my Cavalry unit on opportunity and also took a few unlucky hits from my Skirmishers.  The centre is being mashed by my Warband while on the flank the Praetorian Command has finally been contacted by my Flank but is holding its own.  With the loss of the Sarmatians and most of the Center Command the Roman army breaks and the Germans are Victorious!

In the second game after lunch we swapped sides and the Romans deployed in the more traditional refused flank with the hill and forest forming a nicely defendable bottleneck:

 My Germans had to deploy first so ended up way put of position, so I hoped that the difficult Hill would slow my command opposite them long enough for my massed Warbandto contact...
 Another shot of the Crusades Game, while they all seem to be enjoying themselves alot its not looking good for the Syrians!
 And this is what delayed my Warbands, the Forlorn Hope of the Sarmatians as they came slamming down the Road and straight into my oncoming hordes...
 Meanwhile my slow advance over the hill is met in a hail of Javelins and Sling-Bullets with my Skirmish screen dieing in short order and then my combat units getting whittled away...
 And then being broken :(
 We have defeated the Sarmatians but now are hitting the Roman lines late.  The Warbands are in good order but the loss of the other Command means that after the loss of only one rear base the Army VDT falls below half and its all over.
Roman Honour is Restored!

Overall we had two really fun games that attracted alot of attention.  Fully painted 28mm armies on nice terrain helps and we got a few people in rolling dice too.  I put a display up of the various Warlord Games boxes I have as well as a few sprues and we all made a point of emphasising how cheap Impetus is compared to alot of other game systems. 

You don't need hordes of models as (especially with our reduced 8cm frontage) even Heavy Infantry are only 8 models.  The German models in my army (about 300pts) was two boxes of Infantry and one of Cavalry and cost me less then $100.  Romans are even cheaper!

It seems to have worked too, with a least one club member ordering a new Roman army :)

Speaking of new (well mostly new) Roman armies my next project will be a Roman 300pt Adversary list to take on my Germans so I can demo the game at the Cavaliers gaming club on Thursday.  Its going to get its first outing (in a semi painted state) tomorrow night when one of my mates will run the Germans and the other the Romans.  They are both GW Fantasy players so I'm hoping a game of something a bit more "real" will grab their attention.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Ancient Germans - Day 7: The Horde is Complete!

Hey Folks,

I finished the army and camp last night, yay! 

 In "Horde" formation :)
 And so you can see the individual units. The Auxiliaries on the extreme left are a traitor Roman unit, and just need their shield transfers.
 Left Flank
 Center with Cavalry and Macemen units
 Right Flank, more large Warbands screened by my hordes of Skirmashers
 And the painted Standing Stone "Camp".  I'm pretty happy with how this turned out as it was looking a bit iffy halfway through the painting. I will have to add some shield transfers to the captured Roman shields too.
And a side shot of the "camp"

Overall I'm really happy to now have a fully painted Impetus Army.  Their are still some detail work to do, I want to free hand shield designs (as the Germans did have them, simple stuff compared to the Celts though) and I want to touch up and re-glaze and highlight some of the skin tones.  I also need to paint a Lanciarii's arm and fix the broken Carnyx horn of one of the units.

Today Craig Jamie , Kent and I will be running a couple of  Impetus Demo games at NATCON in Woolston, Christchurch.  Jamie and I will be doing a Middle Imperial Romans vs my Ancient Germans game while Craig and Kent are doing Syrians vs First Crusaders

We will all be taking heaps of Photos and I'm sure be Blogging forthwith!


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ancient Germans - Day 6: WIP "Camp"

Hey Folks,

Tonight I have downed paintbrushes to whip up a Camp for my Ancient Germans.

Now Jamie had the great idea to do this as some standing stones...and after a bit of research I have come up with this:

Apparently the Germans tended to sacrifice their enemies to the Gods, and they were particularly fond of burning Centurions. The poor bugger on the slab is going to painted as fire blackened.

The Megaliths have runes engraved on the inside faces, and this should show up more once painted.

I will be back to painting the rest of the army tomorrow so will prob get this finished on Thursday.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Ancient Germans - Day 5: The Horde Grows

Hey Folks,

Have just finished two more Warband units for the Germans:
 The unit on the left is the Elite Warband with Spears, The Right the normal Warband.  Just realised I forgot to add a shield transfer to the Roman shield on the front base of the non-elite Warband
 And Progress: Almost finished...only another Warband (of Traitor Auxilia), Some Cavalry and the Traitor Auxilia Lanciarii (Javelin Skirmishers) and Short Bow units to go.
 And a sight that should put the bejeubus up any short arsed Roman -  The wall of German Muscle :)
Jamie has also come up with the brilliant Idea of doing Standing Stones as my "camp".  Given the time frame in which I have to build this its gold, so watch this space.


Saturday, April 16, 2011

Ancient Germans - Day 3: More Painting Madness!

Hey Folks,

I've been mighty busy over the last few days and have finished the following:

So that's 1 * Elite FL large Warband, 2 * FL Macemen, 1 * CM Cav, 3 * S Javelin, 2 * S Shortbow

So this leaves:
So 2 * Elite FL Warband, 1 * FL Warband, 1 * CM Cav, 1 * S Shortbow and 2 * S Javelin to go.  Easy (not!)

Oh and a Camp!


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Ancient Germans - Painting Madness!

Hey Folks,

Given the sad demise of War of the Ring at Natcon due to lack of numbers :( Jamie and I have decided to throw a couple of Impetus Demo games to get the game out into the public eye.

Problem is that this will be in 9-10 days and I don't have a painted army!  Jamie's "Painting Service" has worked very hard and his Romans are almost ready to rumble by my Germans are along way from done.

So the Challenge is to paint a 400pt, 2 command German army by Natcon.  Easy (eeek!)

The army will consist of;
  • 4 Large Warband Units of FL Elite German Chuersci Warriors with Spears (Including a Traitor Auxillary Unit)
  • 2 Large Warband Units of FL German Chuersci Warriors
  • 2 Warband Units of FL Macemen
  • 3 Units of CM Cavalry with Hundreds
  • 6 Units of S Javelin Men (Including 2 Traitor Lanciarii)
  • 3 Units of S Traitor Short Bow
I only have 300 points of Germans so drafted all my Roman Auxiliaries in as turncoats. I figured they would have been an Allied German Tribe anyway who have returned to their roots and now fight the good fight against the hobnailed sandal of Roman oppression.

So far progress looks like this:
  •  1 * Elite Warband, 1 * Warband, 1 * S Javelin, 1 * CM Cavalry unit Painted
And on the painting table:
  • 2 * S Bow Painted but need to have the basing done. 
  • 1 * S Javelin, 1 * Macemen base painted and washed to be finished tonight.
  • 2 * Cav, 2 * S Javelin, 1 * Macemen base coated Leather Brown
  • The rest undercoated black....
So I have a we tad of work ahead.  Watch this space. (oh and just realised I need to build a camp!)


Sunday, April 10, 2011

WotR Battle Report - The Hungriest Dragon

Hey Folks,

Jamie and I played this game of War of the Ring last week, where I unleashed my new Ancient Dragon in its inaugural feast.

I had a Misty Mountains list with:
  • Druzhag
  • 6 Coy of Dirty, Dirty Black Shields
  • 4 Coy of Moria Archers
  • 6 Coy of Giant Spiders
  • Ancient Dragon
Jamie ran a Warrior heavy Minas Tirith list that had (IIRC)
  • Aragorn the King
  • Elphar (Isildur)
  • Faramir
  • 2 * 4 Coy Warriors
  • 2 * 3 Coy of Axeman of Lossnarch
  • 3 * 3 Coy Knights
So a little bit different, with MSU knights to cause lots of mayhem.

Below is a picture just after the first turn, where Jamie's Right Flank has rushed forward led by Aragorn and is busy mashing up the Black Shields. Meanwhile the Dragon and Druzhag (with Spiders) have moved up to burn and cast lots of Ruin spells at the wall of Warriors of Minas Tirith in front of them.

Now I have managed to skip forward a few turns as some of the photo's didn't come out right.  Basically Aragorn and Friends have mashed the Black Shield Goblins while Druzhag and the Spiders wiped out the Warriors in front of them and then Thunderous Charged into the flank of a unit of Cavalry smashing them to a paste.  Meanwhile the Dragon has leaped over the Warriors, Tremored the Axemen and Cavalry, survived a Challenge and then proceeded to eat lots of Axemen before hoping over them to complete the job.
The Dastardly Aragorn has called an Epic Challenge, and Druzhag is a moron and accepts it (IE: Failed his courage roll) and leads his Spider unit off to get killed by the King.  Meanwhile the Cav at the top of the photo flank the Archers (who have done some good work so far) and start to crush them while the Dragon finishes off the Axemen.  Summoned Spiders don't do a whole lot (as I rolled up one base) but kill a few axemen from the second unit. Druzhags spells kill some of Aragorns Warriors and then Aragorn's unit gets the drop on my Spiders (eeek!) and  unsurprisingly fails to kill them all.  After this the Dragon lands near them and his spells combined with Druzhags spells wreak bloody ruin on the Warriors but Jamie pins the Dragon in place with Farimirs Cavalry (seen lurking below the house) and the other Axemen unit. The Dragon is badly wounded (as in on 12 wound counters!) but eats a heap Men.
At this point the Cavalry on the Hill have killed the Archers, The Dragon had eaten the Warriors and then leaped up the hill and roasted the Cavalry.  Faramirs Cavalry charges up the hill at the fell monstrosity but the duel fails and the beast eats them all before they can fight.
The weary bloody Dragon eyes the last remnants and wonders if he can be bothered eating them...
And decides he likes the taste of man flesh and charges in after a bit of Ruin Casting and kills them all before they can fight.
So in the end the only model standing was the badly about Epic!

Adding the Dragon surely added a distinctive element to the game, and keeping my precious Wyrm from Aragorn helped.  I'm sure the King will have a spot of Dragon Hunting next time!

So on the first day the Dragon ate some Men, and then on the next few days some more men and Horses. On the Sixth day the Dragon ate a whole lot of Men and then a King, so on the Seventh day he was full, and needed a sleep.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Here Be Dragons! - WotR Ancient Dragon

Hi Folks,

I've been quite busy over the last few weeks with Real Life unfortunantly but I have managed to get a few things finished. First up is this Ancient Dragon for War of the Ring.

I picked this up rediculously cheap in a trade and have had it for awhile. I have kept it "secret" though as I have wanted to spring it on Jamie one night and I did this last week in our Traditional Tuesday Game. Jamie has sent me the photos for this one so I will blog the Battle Report soon, but suffice to say adding something as powerful (and expensive!) as a Dragon really did change the game...

He is painted black as my son Roman chose the colours to coincide with the dragon Toothless from the Movie "How to Train Your Dragon"  and it was a pretty quick job.  I decided to paint the scales with a gloss varnish to add protection to the model as its all metal. The wings and bottom scales were unvarnished. Its an odd model with the head turned to one side but I think it looks better then most fantasy Dragons, more probable as far as fantastical flying giant lizards go!