Sunday, July 15, 2018

THE BATTLE OF LEAD MOUNTAIN

     I've been taking a hiatus from my warfare on the American Frontier hobby for the past few months, but I'm starting to feel the itch again. That's the way it goes with my fluctuating interest level. I work enthusiastically on a project, then reach saturation point, put it aside and move on to the next. Rinse and repeat.
     That's not such a bad thing. Everything gets done in the end. It just takes a while.

     During my run-up to saturation, however, my disgust level can sometimes rise along with it. Then, even little things begin to irritate me. That's when I know it's time to put a project aside.
     I reached this point in my FIW project when my new batch of minis from Blue Moon included this guy (a leader from a pack of Franches de la Marine):

     Note the "Elephant Man" arm. Bothered me more a couple months ago than it does now. I was just getting fatigued. Once snipped and painted, this guy looks awesome.

     There he is (in the photo above). Blue coat, middle base.
     I was not thrilled either with the Marines as a whole. The painting was boring and the figures were indifferent, I thought.

     Above is another. His right leg is more or less a mass of metal. Painted up and based, though, you'd never know it. Sigh... Fatigue again.
     Anyway, I've been working on several other projects and feel refreshed regarding my FIW.
     So now maybe I'm ready to tackle this:
     The "Lead Mountain." I may just paint up my remaining Roger's Rangers and break the games back out.

     The first two of them are in the photo above. I was unsure how to base them so left them loose. Now, I think I'll base two per 30mm base, like the rest of my skirmishers (except the Marines, who I guess fought in loose formations, too, although I don't really know much about them).
     Speaking of games, I've decided on two rulesets: Land of the Free for formal battles (which may or may not include irregulars, but which definitely include line infantry); and Too Few to Fight, Too Many to Die for irregular battles from 1750-1890. I plan on using the latter primarily for Western Plains Wars battles, but also for Eastern irregular warfare. I have a long love-hate relationship with Too Few, but I'm determined to make it work as written out of the box, so to speak. Well, almost. (I'll talk about this in a future blog post.) 
     I believe that will do it for now.
     As always, my friends, don't take any wooden nickels!


Thursday, April 26, 2018

LAND OF THE FREE

     I've played around a little with Osprey Publishing's Land of the Free miniatures game, but I never really gave it good work out -- til now. I recently spent about two weeks painting the remainder of my FIW figures from Blue Moon. These consisted mainly of some British Highlanders French line regulars. Since I already had plenty of Indians and frontiersmen ready to rumble, I finally had enough troops to give LOTF a fair workout.

     What follows is my solo play-through of LOTF's generic "Reconnoiter" scenario. The French side consists of Indians, Canadian irregulars, two medium elements of elite regulars and some cannon. The English have a large contingent of Highlanders (1 Large and 1 Small element) along with another small element of regulars, a large group of provincial units and some scouts.

Today's game
French vanguard elements enter the map. 
Behind their scouts, the British arrive in column -- Highlanders and regulars on the right, militia units on the left,
And the French. One unit is already disrupted in attempting to force march.
The French Indians occupy a strategically-situated wooded hill. They exchange fire with the British scouts.

Canadian milita occupy the high ground. The French have nabbed all the good terrain.
Highlanders lead the way!
French regulars marching toward the sound of the guns.
French regulars take up position on the hill, while the Canadians guard their flank. 
British scouts fall back while the small element of Highlanders maneuver to return fire from the Indians in the woods. 
The militia's line congeals.
French artillery.
The Large element of Highlanders is forced to retreat before they even get a  shot off. The Indians retreat from a Highlander charge and then storm back with muskets blazing. Hit in the front and flank, the Highlanders melt away.

The empty space was once occupied by the Highlanders. Indians dominate the wooded hill. 
     All in all an excellent battle, if not a little grueling. The strongest British unit, the Highlanders, could never get going. They got into the fight once, retreated immediately and then continually failed forced march rolls and never seemed to get anywhere after that. By the time they got moving again, the Brits had lost 4 elements, giving the French a clear victory.
     The game emphasizes leadership more than any other factor and I can see after this one play that playing well will be determined by more than lucky dice rolls. A fun but serious game. Overall, this is one of the best mini games I've played.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

BATTLES EAST AND WEST

1. Preparing for some French and Indian War action. Some French and Indians.


2. And their adversaries.


3. Battle of Lake George, 1755













4. Grant's Defeat (@ Ft. Duquesne), 1758








5. Battle of Big Meadows, 1855 (Rogue River War, Oregon)






6. Battle of Rosebud, 1876.




7. Some Indians, King Philip's War, 1676



8. Some late-16th century Spaniards/Frenchmen (for use in Florida and/or Quebec). Just because.



9. A sort of wargaming still-life...


Till next time....Toodles!