I think I'll make that my new motto..
Saturday 30 March 2019
I thought it was time to use my part completed ECW project and so delved into my old wargames magazine collection to find a suitable small battle to fight. Using the tenuous link of having a few Stuart Asquith figures I thought it would be nice to use his wargames article as the basis of the game.
We haven't used the Baroque rules for at least two years and we were a little rusty initially but apart from a couple of mistakes they allowed us to fight a very very enjoyable game. I must admit I always liked the rules but we simply stopped using them, heaven knows why. They are perfect for the period.
It didnt end well for my infantry as they were also disordered prior to taking on the Parliamentarian cavalry.
So it was a very decisive victory for Fairfax and seemed to reflect history fairly accurately. Yes the Royalist infantry were up against it but as a spectacle it was good and certainly has encouraged me to keep going with the project. We will definitely be using the Baroque rules again now that we have rediscovered the fun of them and how well they work.
I think I'll make that my new motto..
Tuesday 26 March 2019
I have a particular interest in this army simply because the Earl recruited heavily in the counties of Northumberland and Durham.I would like to think they made up for a lack of equipment with true Northern grit.Sadly most of his soldiers were killed in the Marston Moor campaign and the Earl sailed for Holland as he had had enough.
To be honest who could blame him. He had expended a lot of his personal fortune and lost a lot of tenants that he would have known in his fight for the King. I don't think he felt he was appreciated enough by Charles and his advisers who were safely ensconced in Oxford. Anyway they are completed and I am now starting on my lead mountain of ECW figures gathered from various sources both old and new.
These two troops are from Cromwell's regiment.They were originally from the box of figures I obtained at York which I have had to repaint and generally doctor. Gilder only sculpted a small range of figures so I have attempted to keep the back and breastplated cavalry for the roundheads and the more jaunty hatted chaps for the Royalists. I did say I was going Old School with these armies and one cant beat a bit of stereotyping to reinforce the point.Naturally most of the Parliamentarian horse will be classed as 'trotters' and cannot counter charge. Only Cromwell's command will be able to act more aggressively. As for Royalists well they will be classed as 'dashing' but naturally will be difficult to control once they are off their leash.Yes I know its not really that historical but my game, my rules.Anyway who can resist an uncontrollable cavalry charge.
Im going to ramble now, so I will apologise before I start.....But it concerned my viewpoint regarding the return to what is Old School and no doubt a large dollop of nostalgia.
Anyway the series got me comparing the Battle magazine against the modern day magazines and how things have changed or progressed, dependent on one's viewpoint.I totally 'get' that the 1960's and 1970's were not a good time for wargamers. The manufacturers were few and the ranges were in the main pretty small and of poor quality.The few modelling shops where one could actually look at and buy wargames figures were very rare and invariably didnt contain what you were looking for.....
'We dont have the French Voltigeurs but these British chaps look very similar?'
Well if one has enough cash you can have everything that you desire and more and yet like so much of modern life it just seems a bit too easy and attainable and somehow very very empty. Its difficult to quantify but for me unless one has struggled to achieve something don't you appreciate it less?
So you can now buy an off the shelf set of rules and invariably you will have to buy the necessary range of figures that are described in the said book. But dont worry it will only be about 50 figures a side and therefore it wont cost that much. [Well okay it will be expensive, BUT you will need them]
Of course there will be add ons and then suddenly after about six months the 'NEW' improved set of rules etc will be on the horizon, and off you go again.
I think Osprey are up to 25+ releases. [Now before anyone says anything I've nothing against Osprey], but that's just one company and each day I see another company touting for trade and contributions to release another set plus figure range.
I always think of Supermarkets. [ I'm showing my age here] Basically I like apples. In supermarkets they appear perfect. Bright red, very large and very shiny and yet they taste of absolutely nothing, tasteless but perfect to look at.....A bit like the hobby nowadays.
All fur coats and no knickers.
[ Luckily Morrison's have introduced?? wonky vegetables and fruit. Things that aren't perfect but taste like they're supposed to. A sort of Old School outlook for food. ]
I think basically what I am saying in a very poor fashion is that for me Old School is an appreciation of neglected figure ranges, with wonky legs and dubious uniforms that encapsulate what the hobby was and is for me. Research, reading, painting and playing with toy soldiers whilst having a laugh at the ridiculousness of overgrown children agonising over some poor dice throw. So expect a further pile of dodgy lead over the coming weeks as I edge towards my goal of two Old School English Civil War armies led by a definitely old school pedant.
Thursday 21 March 2019
Tuesday 19 March 2019
Sadly my win rate was dire with the battles we fought but all the games were brilliant and very tense affairs. I especially enjoyed using the Parliamentarians at Edgehill, it was a very bloody affair but for a change the cavalry gave a good account of themselves.
Yes they are quite crude looking.
Yes they are small in comparison to Renegade, Front Rank etc but beauty is in the eye of the beholder and I like them. I only wish I could have got more of them.
I really enjoyed the writings of Stuart Asquith especially his wonderful ECW scenarios and battles in the old Battle and Military Modelling.I also enjoyed his prickly observations in the Observation Post. If only things weren't so bland nowadays and a spade could be called a spade.
I finally completed a Yellowcoat Regiment that has been sat waiting completion. These again are a combination of old painted figures and new castings. Yes they are bright, but I do like colour even though it isnt accurate for the period.These represent one of the London Trained bands.
Next we have another ironside regiment using old figures from my York purchases, painted/re painted.The Hinchliffe figure is a lovely casting and for me looks the part.They are for Cromwell's brigade.
One thing I've noticed these last couple of weeks is that I am struggling to paint more than an hour at a time nowadays due to back problems. After that I need to go and rest, walk or simply do something else.
I am in constant awe of painters who can churn out large numbers of painted figures in a short period without suffering pain or discomfort and wonder what their secret is?
Personally I attribute the back problem to the numerous road accidents I was involved in during my former life. People talk of nine lives but my tally of write offs and serious bumps was past that total and yet I was lucky enough to walk away from them all. I liken it to a footballer who ignores the knocks until he discovers it all catching up with him.
But basically all is well in my wargaming firmament and if anyone wants to offload some Stuart Asquith ECW figures, I'm your man.