Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Battle of the Weekend - French against an Austro-British Army

Last saturday we had another game of Black Powder at our club. I commanded a french army, and opposing me was an austro-british allied force under the leadership of my friend, Muller.

SAM_8405

Here we can see the french deployment on the right of the pics.

SAM_8406

SAM_8409

Their foes had 2 brigades of british and one of austrians. The german brigade deployed on the right flank (left of the pic below).

SAM_8407

SAM_8408

SAM_8410
French columns prepare to advance


SAM_8411

The 3Âș french brigade, deployed on the right flank, was accross the river, and the british, concentrated on the middle-right side of the field. The allies were determined to pin that french brigade on the opposite side of the river with artillery fire, while the bulk of its forces would oppose the remaining 2 french brigades in the middle.

SAM_8414

SAM_8412
French guns open fire on advancing british lines.


SAM_8416
British form into lines to receive the french columns.


There was a small town between the french and allied lines on the table side opposite to the river, making a full advance by either side a complex matter. The french chose to stay back and wait for any brave (reckless) enemy unit to advance. A regiment of british light was sent forward to test the french position, and even though it managed to shaken the enemy's guns with drilled musketry, it was soon overwhelmed by canister shots and flanking fire from french liners close by.

SAM_8417

SAM_8418
The british light infantry exchange close quarter fire with their french foes. 


SAM_8423
The british break under the pressure of combined french musquets and artillery.


In the middle of the field, the french columns reach their first target, a regiment of Brunswickers. The germans hold their selves heroically against superior numbers on the enemy side, only giving the french a couple hundred yards of ground.

SAM_8420

The fighting on the french left flank recommences as a second enemy unit, a Regiment of Austrian Cuirassiers, is sent forward to test the imperial position. It charges a french line, that fails to form into square and is then severely wounded. The french prove tough enough to resist the charge, thouh, hold their ground and force the austrians to turn around to prepare for a second thrust. The carabiniers are then dispatched to intercept them, thus keeping the enemy from renewing their attack on the french column nearby.

SAM_8424

The clash between those 2 formations of heavy horses is a sight to see. The fighting is fierce, black and golden cuirass dazzling in the sunlight, these best of cavalries in search of their share of glory.

SAM_8428

Nearby, a second wave moves towards the french position. This time, 2 regiments of the fearsome Austrian grenadiers.

SAM_8427

SAM_8430

In the middle of the field, the brunswickers finally break and flee, and the french seize their momentum to push forward, with the Old Guards charging at a british line to the right, while fusiliers of the line unleash their musketry fire on the british horse artillery.

SAM_8429

The british left flank is faring better. Their artillery puts the french formations in disorder repeatedly, and the threat of the british dragoons keeps the enemy infantry from crossing the river. 

SAM_8431

Between cuirassiers and carabiniers, the battle is bloody, but no side could claim a clear win, and formations break contact to reform at the rear. The Scot Greys are then sent forward to put pressure on the exausted carabiniers once again, but difficulties in the austro-british chain of command on this area of the battlefield are such that the actual order to charge never reaches the greys.

SAM_8433

SAM_8434
The carabiniers rest their big black horses behind the protection of infantry ranks.

The british centre proves tougher than it seemed. The routing of the brunswickers, instead of shaking the morale of surrounding units, had the effect of renewing their resolution to hold the lines. The thundering strength of the advancing old guards found in the british fusiliers an unfaltering wall, that against all odds, was continually resisting the advances of the enemy grenadiers.

SAM_8435

SAM_8436
British rifles take position on the bridge to give fire on the french lines, in support to their artillery shooting from accross the river. On the top, the dragoons cross the shallow waters at a gallop to charge at the swiss regiment.


At this point we made an error in the application of the rules. Cavalry crossing the river should take a skirmish formation which would unallow them to charge at a formed unit, but I only realised that later. Anyway, it was fun, the square wasn't enough to hold the dragoons, and the swiss ended up breaking and fleeing the field.

SAM_8438

In the centre, one french line regiment breaks to the fire of the british guns, and another steps forward to keep the english under pressure. The guard finnaly gets the upper hand on the clash against the british lines, and one regiment routs from the field.


SAM_8442

The fighting on the french left flank was also developing, with the austrian grenadiers advancing under artillery fire from french guns. 

SAM_8443


SAM_8444

At this point, we had to call it a day, for my friend had to go. The battle was pretty balanced, and there was no telling who would had seized the day had we had more time to play it out completely. 

SAM_8445

This was the second time I put my austrians on the table, and its nice to give them the opportunity to see action while I go on building their units. I have enough to field a single brigade, but there are more to come on the next several months, since I plan to end the year with 3 fully functional napoleonic armies, as well as a roman and a barbarian forces, too.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Eisenkern Keilerkopf - APC for my army of Space Nazis

I recently finished painting my first 2 keilerkopfs, from Dreamforge Games. These are the most complex kits I've ever assembled, but are quite rewarding, as the models are amazing, full of moving parts and thoroughly detailed.

SAM_8373

SAM_8374

SAM_8375

SAM_8376

SAM_8377

SAM_8378

SAM_8379

SAM_8380

SAM_8382

SAM_8384

The upper part of the chasis is left unglued, so you can remove it to check the inside, which is fully detailed. Once in place, this upper part fits nicely, and doesn't slip around. The kit also provides 10 extra models (in addition to the drivers) to be assembled sitting on the benches, representing a squad in transport. I chose to let them out, but this is an excellent addition to this top notch kit.

Another reason for the top to be removable is that there are a couple other weapon options about to be released and one of them requires the replacement of the top, as seen on this image I found on the web:




SAM_8385


The excellence of this product shows in the little details, such as the glasses, which have a greenish finish that simulates the looks of bullet-proof glass. Outstanding!

SAM_8386

SAM_8387

SAM_8389

Here is the second keilerkopf, painted with slightly different cammo stripes and a different coat of arms on the left side, but otherwise pretty identical to the first.

SAM_8391

SAM_8392

SAM_8393

SAM_8394

SAM_8395


Here are some scale shots of the tank next to an eisenkern trooper. Pretty big vehicle!

SAM_8396

SAM_8398

SAM_8399

SAM_8401

And look at the number of moving parts on that model:

SAM_8403

I liked the keilerkopf so much I'm ordering a couple more, along with some heavy troopers and heavy support also recently released by Dreamforge.