Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Additions to Very British Civil War Forces

I've added some more troops to upgrade my Revolutionary Naval force and my British Union of Fascist force.

The Revolutionary Naval company has augmented its headquarters element with three additional figures - a Leftenant resplendent in his whites (but with a red armband to show his "true" colors) and two seamen (front left and right).  The senior petty officer (back left) who was in command as been relegated to 2ic while the petty officer (right rear) now carries a banner suitably engrossed "Maritime Defence Force."  The figures are a mix of Pulp Figures (leftenant, from pack PBT 16) and Brigade Games (packs BG-WIAG 15, 16, and 17).  The banner is courtesy of Leics-Gamer from the VBCW Forum [link].  I also added two more riflemen to each of the rifle sections in the company.

I've also replaced my old "true 25mm" British colonial naval gunners with bigger 28mm 20th Century British naval figures from Pulp Figures (pack PBT 16).

Although they are not really in "gunner" poses, they'll do until I can find something better.  The gun is one that I have had for a very long time (as you can see from the "yellowing" of the white enamel paint).

The Revolutionary Naval company is now up to strength of 35 figures (5 in HQ and 10 in each rifle section) plus a 4-man gun team.

The British Union of Fascist (BUF) local forces from east Essex (Colchester area) have added an expanded headquarters element and a third rifle section.

Now called  the Bolton Rifles (banner and name courtesy of Leics-Gamer again), the expanded headquarters element has a captain (center), leftenant (far left), sergeant (right center), banner bearer (left center, obviously), and a rifle grenadier (far right).  These figures and the ones in the Third Section (below) are from Pulp Figures (packs PGS 15 and 16).

The Third Rifle Section has a sergeant (center with raised hand), eight riflemen, and one rifle grenadier (kneeling figure next to sergeant).

This completes the BUF Bolton Rifles to a company of 35 figures (5 in HQ and 10 in each rifle section) plus a 3-man heavy machine-gun team.

Now I've almost completed all the units that I have on-hand.  I still have to complete painting a new figure for the Squire of East Bergholt (a special Pulp Figures model), a section of mercenaries who will, initially, fight on the Anglican/Albertian side, and two Daimler armored cars for the Royalist armored force.

I've also identified some possible cavalry and infantry additions to the Royalist/BUF forces and cavalry additions to the Anglican/Albertian forces.  But it will be a while before they are ready for combat.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

BUF Special Assault Section

Ever since before Christmas I have been in in painting doldrums.  But I took this week off from work and have used part of the time to finish a 10-man section of British Union of Fascists Special Assault Service troops for my Very British Civil War forces.  The figures are Pulp Figures German troops in coalscuttle helmets, PGS-08 and -10.

The leftenant in charge of the Special Assault Section is a hardened veteran of the Great War and the Freikorps fighting in the early 1920s.  He is armed with a Bergnman MP 18 with a straight magazine.

The entire assault section - one leftenant (above), two sergeants (each armed with a Bergman MP 18 with TM 08 "snail" magazine), five riflemen, one rifle-grenadier (kneeling), and one grenadier.
Those of you who are fans of David Weber's Honorverse science fiction books will recognize the uniform colors as belonging to the State Security forces of the People's Republic of Haven.
This unit will eventually have its own "armored" vehicle as soon as I can convert a Crossley with added "armored" sides, etc.  These troops are all veterans and will be used by the Colchester Royalist/BUF garrison to crack any "hard nuts" they encounter.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Snow Day in Central Mississippi

After warnings yesterday about the approaching winter storm, we awoke this morning to gently falling snow which had been proceeded by some freezing rain.  Although the Jackson area only got about 1" of the white stuff, it was enough to just about paralyze this deep south burg.  Bridges iced over and all the local schools closed.  It was worse south of here, with southern Mississippi getting up to3" of freezing rain, sleet, and snow.  They even got snow and ice down on the Mississippi Gulf Coast which is very rare.
Since I didn't get a call from my box or hear a TV announcement about the state government offices being closed, I drove into work, taking about twice as long to get there as usual.  Then about an hour after I arrived we were told to go home since the governor closed all state offices except for mission critical personnel (of which I'm not!!).  The drive home was even slipperier than the drive into work.  And this evening we heard that the state offices won't open until noon tomorrow (Wednesday) so I get to sleep late for a change.
Here is a picture of Col Campbell's quarters on this infrequent snow day in central Mississippi, taken about 3:00 pm when I ventured out to retrieve the mail..

Houses from Michaels

Last Monday I was out in northeastern Jackson metropolitan area and stopped by the Michaels store.  While there I found a clearance area containing a number of different size and shape paper mache boxes.  There were four in the shape of two story houses which I bought for 99 cents each.  Even if I botch the "artwork" to decorate them as houses, they were well worth the expenditure.

A Royalist officer and a BUF commander pose in front of a newly acquired house.   As you can see from the ruler, it is about 6" tall to the ridge of te roof and 7" to the top of the chimney.  The roof comes off so that things can be placed inside, which also means we can put troops inside.  I'll decorate these with  doors, windows, and other trim.

A view with the roof removed, showing the front dormer and the side chimney in better detail.

Two of the houses side by side, each being about 5-1/2" wide and about 4-1/2" deep.  I think they will look good both as stand alone buildings and as row houses.
More later as Campbell's Construction Company works its "magic" on these.

Liberty Bell Legion Additions

In my last post, I described a unit I have created for my Very British Civil War gaming - the Liberty Bell Legion, raised in the United States to oppose the Fascists surrounding the British throne.  The company headquarters and the 2nd Rifle Section have finally been outfitted and have joined the anti-Royalist forces in southwestern Suffolk.
Company Headquarters section - (from left) first sergeant, company commander, standard bearer, runner, and company executive
Better view of the Legion banner
2nd Rifle Section - lieutenant and eight riflemen
The Legion has begun field training with the Anglican forces around Bury St. Edmonds.  A third rifle section is still being outfitted. All the Legion units will join the anticipated actions against the Royalist and BUF forces in eastern Essex in the spring.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Some Yuletide Painting

My painting has been going slow these last several months.  I just finished a new unit for my Very British Civil War forces and am working on a new unit for my French and Indian Wars forces.

Very British Civil War

First Section of a company of the Liberty Bell Legion
 The Liberty Bell Legion was formed in the mid 1930s as an adjunct to the more progressive wing of the American Democratic Party.  Initially they were used to raise funds to ensure the election of progressive candidates to the US Congress and to state legislatures.  But when the constitutional crisis broke in Great Britain and the Fascists began to influence the British government, many members of the Liberty Bell Legion traveled to the British Isles to offer their services to oppose the Fascists in the British government.  Organized into independent companies, these volunteers quickly went to various places where more socialist Anglican forces were in control.  One place was the Anglican League command at Bury St. Edmonds, where the 1st Section of the 3rd Liberty Company soon arrived.  The rest of the company are still getting outfitted (painted) and will join them before too many days are past.  They will soon see action as the Spring campaign commences.

These figures are from Falcon (US) Miniatures' Boxer Rebellion line and are US Marine officers and enlisted.  I've had these figures for a number of years.  The impetus for this unit was a flag that Leics_Gamer posted on the Very British Civil War forum of the Liberty Volunteers from New York state.  That was quickly morphed into the Liberty Bell Legion and, as they say, the rest is history (or alternate history, rather).

Banner of the Liberty Bell Legion to be carried by every independent company
I only had enough figures to form 9-man sections instead of the 10 I wanted, so if any American readers of this post have some these Falcon Miniatures Boxer Rebellion American Marines in the advancing pose, please get in touch with me.

French and Indian War

The other figures that I am painting are some of Der Alte Fritz's incomparable Fife and Drum American Revolution militia.  My war gaming buddy Lord Sterling picked these up for me at Historicon back in July.  I finally began painting them.  Although I'm not far along, they are looking rather good.  I'll be using them for a colonial American unit fighting against the dastardly French deep in the backwoods of America.

Part of the militia unit in progress
I hope all my readers have a very nice Christmas holyday and a happy new year.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Colonial Barracks - Part 2

This is the second and final part of the pictures I took at the Colonial Barracks convention over the November 8-10 weekend in New Orleans.

The first game I will cover took place Saturday night.  Titled "The Colonel's Got to Know," it was run by Gerry Webb of Castaway Arts in Australia using troops provided by Mark Stevens.  It was based on the final scenes of the movie Gunga Din where Gunga Din and the Sergeants 3 are trapped in the Thugee temple and the British column is marching into an ambush.  Can Gunga warn the Colonel before the trap is sprung?

We had four British players and six Thugee players with each having command of a single unit.  I commanded a Thugee unit of riflemen and waited with my troops hidden among the rocks while the British marched singing merrily into our trap.

The unsuspecting British column with a unit of Highlanders, followed by a Gatling carried by an elephant, then another unit of Highlanders, and a unit of Indian cavalry.
Martha, the Thugee commander, sits behind the temple carefully watching and gauging the progress of the British column.  If you look closely you can see Gunga Din with his bugle and the Sergeants 3 on the roof of the temple.  Gunga had to roll a D6 every turn but couldn't sound his bugle until he had reached the "magic number," which I think was 10.  Martha had the Thugee cannon concealed on the platform at the temple entrance, loaded and ready to fire.
The British column plods along, deeper and deeper into the valley.  They had to roll distance dice every turn and move that full distance.
The British column from the viewpoint of my Thugee riflemen.  The column has been warned by Gunga's bugle and the lead unit has faced to either side of the trail, guns ready.
As the Indian cavalry attempt a complicated reverse wheel, the Thugee cavalry charge into their flank.  Only a few Indian cavalrymen could fight so in the ensuing melee, the Thugee cavalry defeated the Indians and sent them reeling.  But they rallied the next turn and came back at the Thugees.

Ross, one of the Thugee commanders, and Gerry Webb, look over the battlefield.  You can see my Thugee riflemen lining the top of the rocky ridge.  The two Highlander units and the Gatling gun have deployed  right in the middle of the "kill zone."
Tim, a British commander if I remember correctly, looks on the dread as the Highlanders start to fall to accurate Thugee rifle fire.
Even though the Thugee cavalry won initially, the rallied Indian cavalry came back and slaughtered the Thugees, forcing them to race away to safety.
Freed of the threat of Thugee cavalry, the Indian cavalry turns to ride to the aid of their Highland infantry who are being attacked by Thugees down in the valley.  Sometime during these initial turns, the British Gatling shot down the Thugee gunners, rendering their gun useless.
John, the British commander in his red "coatee," watches stoically as his men fight for their lives against the Thugee attackers.
Riding over the sabered and bayoneted bodies of the Thugees, the Indian cavalry heads towards my riflemen who have too eagerly come out of the rocks.  Seeing the cavalry, they quickly scampered back and resumed their fire from the safety of the rocky hill.
The Indian cavalry then turned away and headed back into the fray around the Gatling gun.  Another Thugee spear unit has appeared after moving stealthily around the rear of the British.  Trapped in the dusty valley with no cover, the British and Indians died a slow and bloody death underneath the rifles of the "expert" Thugees (our die rolls were really good during this game).

The second game was played Sunday morning.  Titled "The Real Glory," it was run by Mark Stevens and was based on the movie by the same name that starred Gary Cooper.

The Philippine constabulary compound with its walls manned and ready.

The Catholic nun and her orphan charges, escorted by a couple of American freebooters, dash down the trail towards the constabulary compound.

Martha controlled the nun and her detachment (on the trail to the center right).  Several Moro units have appeared and are trying to cut the little band of refugees off while a constabulary patrol advances out of the compound to their succor.

A panorama of the battlefield.  The Moros came into the battlefield from the sides of the table.  John (dark shirt on left) and Ken were constabulary commanders while Walt and Ross (on left) and Bill (standing with camera) and I were the Moro commanders.

John makes a grans gesture as Moros close around the compound entrance.  The nun and her detachment have already gained the shelter of Ken's constabulary patrol who form a battle line, facing the Moro attack.

Suddenly the Moros hear the sounds of boats coming up the river.  The constabulary reinforcements, American Marines and Filipino regulars, are coming to the rescue.  While some Moros head towards the landing, others redouble their efforts to get into the compound.  Unfortunately the constabulary riflemen and Gatling gunners are very accurate and Moro commanders fall right and left.

A few Moros make it to the top of the wall but their ladder was pushed away behind them.  At the compound entrance, the nun and her charges scoot in closely pursued by a Moro juramentado (fanatic).

While the nun and the orphans run into the chapel (lower right), the compound commander and a soldier try to stop the juramentado.  The soldier is killed but the officer puts a .45 caliber slug between the Moro's eyes, ending that threat.  With most of their commanders dead and the Marines and Filipino regulars slowly but steadily advancing, the remaining Moros slip away into the surrounding jungle.  "He who runs away, lives to fight another day."
I hope that you enjoyed the pictures of the various games I posted.  Remember, Colonial Barracks is scheduled next year (2014), tentatively for the second weekend in November.  If you are close enough to New Orleans, please come and join our fun.  Watch for future announcements on and on the Miniatures Page.