Monday 20 September 2021

I feel like Keith Richard?

  I made mention of my podcast experience but didnt have a link available. I do now;

Please dont expect any amazing insightful ideas or facts, I must admit my memory has struggled due to lockdown so some recollections may be downright wrong.I did have some notes but even they were probably wrong. Sometimes I feel like Keith Richard's but dont have the excuse of drugs abuse.

John and I fought a cracking Never Mind the Billhooks game last week, using 240 points which dont sound a lot but actually is.I only used one large Irish ward backed up by the normal WOR troop types.I did however opt for some light cavalry having learned my lesson at Derby.They fought really well until they were annihilated.

I did use some ideas I had obtained from the Billhooks weekend such as linear units as opposed to blocks. I also used more gallowglass and kern.
The battle was a real toughie which was in the balance right up until the end when I had my commander killed with the remainder of his gallowglass.
I must admit my most effective units were levy archers, kern and my artillery. The levy shot really well and decimated John's retinue archers, as below.

                                       My levy archers being pushed forward by their betters.
The remnants of my cavalry were still able to charge into the backs of John's levy archers, they didnt last much longer when the shadowing enemy cavalry hit them.
And then back to my usual luck as I went  charge into the flank of John's billhook unit only to be stopped with an event card.They did fight the next move simply because they were hit in their flank.
Earl Kildare's ward, contained some hard hitting melee types that did fight well, even against some tough men at arms. Unfortunately I was slowly being out maneuvered as they fought.  
Its great to see we will be experiencing some wargames shows in the next couple of months and I am especially looking forward to Battleground which is a really friendly show. 


Monday 13 September 2021

Warning, burbling clown is interviewed on respected podcast.

I failed to mention in my last post that I had taken part?? in a podcast courtesy of Yarkshire Games. Id very kindly been put forward by Colin Ashton as someone who might provide something interesting to say about wargaming. Im afraid poor Ken lost three hours of his life he will never get back. I was very impressed by the professional way Ken conducted the whole event and I never thought I would need to use my old media training. Needless to say I talked the legs of a donkey but hopefully Ken can edit the whole thing into something of interest. Its on you-tube I believe, just search Yarkshire Games.
I completed a right mix of figures these last few days in between putting part of my garden to bed for the Winter. First the Carnegie regiment of Scots.

I bought a few unpainted Macedonian cavalry from E Bay, I think they were Agema but dont quote me on that. They are very crisp sculpts and easy to paint.These will be added to my slowly building Successors which I hope to finish before I reach complete gagaism.

Ah yes, some more Kern. I didnt need them as I have enough but for completeness sake I painted a few foot archers. Not my best effort but acceptable I suppose.Skirmish archers in Billhooks arent very effective but being Kern they can melee if needed so are always handy.

Finally another unit of gallowglass. These are a mixture of Antediluvian Miniatures and Perry. They are compatible size wise. The Antediluvian figures are based on a Durer sketch from that time and are lovely figures, definitely recommended. The sculptor really made an accurate copy of the sketch with these figures, truly remarkable.


Wednesday 8 September 2021

The Billhooks Bash Saturday 4th September 2021


Well braving the doom spreaders and Armageddon mongers I drove down to Derby at the weekend to take part in my first ever wargames tournament. Ive never actually taken part in any sort of competitive wargames tournament and to be very honest the Billhooks Bash was never meant to be that type of day.

I stayed in a Travelodge near the venue which was in a large industrial estate a matter of a 100 yards away. The venue was a Games Workshop club and shop which was very welcoming and well set out with tables. The tournament was organised by the most excellent Pete Harris. Peter did a great job of herding cats/wargamers to their places. Each army was 120 points with 10 points added for the main commander.  Nearby was three very decent pubs selling good beer and good food, and they had people in them at 5pm?

I thought I'd turn up with something a little different and pointed up the Earl of Kildare's Irish contingent that was slaughtered at Stokefield. Unfortunately I never considered any cavalry for my contingent and instead relied on Kern and Gallowglass. 
Peter planned three games per competitor, umpired by the Billhooks man himself, Andy Callan. It was interesting to see how other wargamers played their games and what they had included in their respective contingents.A favourite was light cavalry and veteran billmen, of the two the cavalry caused me the most trouble and in each of my three battles I faced cavalry with their own general. Effectively they could turn a flank easily. 
My first battle was against Ralph the new kid on the block. Ralph being much younger than me had been brought up on Warhammer 40K and it showed as he placed down company after company of archers and of course bloody light cavalry. My Irish did okay considering although my saving throws were hopeless and I failed to win any cards that could have helped me. I lost the battle by one token. A great introduction to the big boys league. 
Whilst in two of the battles I struggled to throw decent dice I did manage to do everything right in my second game. But in my last game I was given a lesson in how to save. When one scores 16 hits you expect to at least kill one man at arms. Well no actually. What are the chances of saving every hit?

Anyway in my second game I faced not only light cavalry but artillery as well. My Irish definitely dont like big guns. Luckily my opponent threw three ones when he fired the damned thing and it blew up! Id never seen this happen before and I must admit it was very funny.
 Even better I actually drew an event card which contained treachery and could be played against any enemy unit or block of units not under direct command. Again Id never seen this card before.
 I played this against a block of two archer units which firstly peppered the veteran billmen before charging to their destruction. I won the battle convincingly but attribute the victory more to good luck than my generalship.

My final game was a complete tactical disaster as my poor kern were shot to pieces by archers and hand-gunners. Of course I faced light cavalry which piled into my men at arms block led by Earl Kildare. One would think trained killers could handle light cavalry especially led by a tough leader. Well no actually, my saving was desperate, my killing was worse, and my ability to throw ones proved once again Im a freaking dice genius. Kildare fell, surrounded by his retainers and my battle was over.   

Peter arranged during lunch, yes lunch was also provided a painting competition. Mike Peters from Bristol rightly won the painting competition with a beautifully painted Lancasterian contingent led by the chap below. 

What can one say about the event. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole day. Yes I was exhausted, but the games were played in a brilliant attitude. There was banter, there was humour and there was a great feeling of pushing toy soldiers around tables. Peter has already talked of arranging another Billhooks Bash. Will I be going? Damn right I will.


My 6mm Napoleonic set up.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.
Austria 1809.

Austrian Hussars

Austrian Hussars
Hinchliffe figures

Austrian Grenzer

Austrian Grenzer
Austrian Grenzer

Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2013
Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2012

Smoggycon 2012
Smoggycon 2012

Smoogycon 2009

Smoogycon 2009
My French getting another beating