Tuesday, February 21, 2017

More Books

This weekend's haul from Half-Price Books. The one clipped off in the upper right is Chandler's The Military Maxims of Napoleon. I'm most interested/excited though in the book in the center, Conserving the Enlightenment, a scholarly work on the early French engineering corps.

The book on Marlborough is a little light, but it has some nice maps and seemed like something I could give someone as an introduction.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Hold the Line Frederick's War

The Prussians trying to reorganize into a more effective offensive formation while the Austrians rally their center

Had a great time today playing Hold the Line Frederick's War from Worthington Games with my friend Bob Ellis via Vassal.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Recent Kickstarters I've Backed

Pub Battles: Antietam (Limited "Sharpsburg" Edition)

While I may have some quibbles with the ambiguity of the rules for these games, there's just no denying that the Pub Battles games are fun, fast playing, Kriegspiel-like, and just plain gorgeous. When I saw that there was a limited edition version of their upcoming Antietam game on Kickstarter, there was just no way I could keep myself from backing it.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Playing Pub Battles Brandywine

My wife and I played our first game of Pub Battles: Brandywine last weekend. She took the Continentals and I took the British. This was only Terri's third time playing a wargame, so I had a bit of a quandary as to which side would be best for her. In the end I though being the defender would be a bit easier, despite having to shift front to handle Cornwallis' attack.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Lilliburlero, or Aughrim Again

So, this arrived Saturday.  Because, as my friends know, I am a completionist in my obsessions.

After playing the Battle of Aughrim a couple of times I really wanted to find a board game covering it. A quick check of Board Game Geek revealed this gem - ironically the issue of ATO from right before I started my subscription with them!

I only ordered this Wednesday I think. Pretty amazing shipping by the ATO team. I've always been pretty pleased with Against the Odds. Not all of the games have appealed to me, but they always seem well done, the component quality is good, and the magazine is always filled with well-written articles the provide background to the game. Definitely recommended if you're interested in magazine games.

They're also not afraid to take on battles/campaigns from periods that aren't as popular with mainstream wargamers, like this. I also have their very good game covering The Great Northern War.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Pike & Shot Reading List I

My recent posts on the Early Modern era and associated games have lead to some requests for book titles on the period. Since I've read pretty extensively on the subject recently, I have a pretty good list. Recognizing that not everyone wants to dive into this the way I have, I've pulled together what I think are some good introductory titles.

Walcourt 1689

The results about halfway through the game, being careful to take my own advice and "wait for the guns."

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Waiting for the Guns

Waiting for my artillery to unlimber before advancing at Aughrim

As wargamers, we are often guilty of taking actions with our pixeltruppen that no real general in his right mind would ever do. Casualties in wargames often exceed even the worst defeats real armies suffered, even when you win the game!

Monday, December 26, 2016

1691 - The War of the Two Kings: Aughrim

Williamite foot and horse move to seize the Attibrassil Bridge and the village of Kilcommadan.
The period of European warfare from about 1670 to 1763 holds great fascination for me. In fact, I haven't been this engaged in learning about a historical period for probably the last 25 years. This is the period of transition from pike & shot warfare to the innovations of Napoleon. It was a period of constant, though in many cases limited warfare; a period where cautious generals avoided open battles and great ones sought to force it. It's a period filled with interesting personalities, fascinating campaigns, and dramatic battles.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Scourge of War at Dogs of War

Despite what posts over the past several months may make it look like, I don't just play board games. I still play quite a few computer wargames as well. This past weekend I played a great game of Scourge of War: Waterloo with the team over at the Dogs of War VU, a group dedicated (among other things) to playing multiplayer sims and wargames. The game was very enjoyable, and the DOW crew are great people. Be sure to drop by and read the AAR from this weekend's game.

Monday, December 5, 2016

A Famous Victory - Blenheim: Battle is Joined

Warfare during this period certainly is a methodical affair. It takes Cutts from 12:30 until 2:00 PM to get his leading brigade across the Nebel and launch the first assault on Blenheim. Despite support from the battery next to the village and all three battalions of the famed French Navarre regiment holding the front edge of Blenheim, Rowe's men charge the barricades.  Their combined fire shatters the 1/Navarre, eliminating it. Return fire disrupts a British battalion.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

A Famous Victory - Blenheim: Reset

Blenheim setup overview
After doing a lot more reading about Blenheim and getting in a couple of turns to familiarize myself with the rules, I've decided to reset the game and start over. This time I'm using a much closer to historical setup, based on the OOB and maps from Obscure Battles. Not only is the distribution of units more correct, the actual battalions and regiments are mostly in the correct locations. The OOBs from the game and web site don't entirely line up, but they're close.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

A Famous Victory - Blenheim: Anglo-Allied Setup and First Turns

Now for the Anglo-allied setup. Again, this is a quasi-historical setup. The commands ("lines" in game terms) are composed of roughly the right mix of units, and are in roughly the right places - as far as anyone knows. For a future game I will probably use the positions as illustrated here for what may be a more historical setup.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

A Famous Victory - Blenheim: French Setup

The Great Leaders series from now defunct gaming publisher Moments in History is a series of two games covering Marlborough's four great victories during the War of Spanish Succession, Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde and Malplaquet. I'm about to start a the Blenheim scenario. In this scenario the Franco-Bavarian army sets up first. The above is an overview of the Franco-bavarian position. I've gone with a more-or-less historical setup, both because I prefer historical setups and to test out the game mechanics with a known deployment.