Sunday 28 March 2021

A Difficult Day for the Empire

 Our regular Thursday Zoom game was a return to the Sudan. We decided to use Black Powder rules but with the added "spice" of the Sands of Sudan random cards so that the British player had no idea where the Mahdists would come from or in what numbers plus the chance of a wheel coming off a wagon or wheeled gun or an officer keeling over with sun stroke !

Steve ran the British column trying to get some supply wagons through to a small port on the Nile, I played the cards and moved the Mahdists. 15mm figures this time.

Lancers scout to the right of the column and the Camel Corps plods along on the left. The column is made up of a Scots battalion followed by a Sudanese one, wagons and an RA gun plus a Gatling gun at the rear. The port is top left of the picture.

Some Mahdists appear at 1 o'clock and 2 o'clock but no immediate threat

But they do move fast !

This is a threat ! They are charging - turn to face !

The Scots are thrown back in confusion but the artillery is giving the enemy something to think about

The Lancers charge the enemy in the rear

and they are destroyed before they can attack the wagons

Now more enemy appear and charge the head of the column

The Sudanese recoil and the Camel Corps are their next target

Eventually, the enemy are driven off - but what's this - an enemy war band appears behind the British !

The machine gun had shed a wheel earlier and got left behind. This now shoots into the flank of the enemy focussed on the back of the Sudanese infantry

Oh No ! A large band of Fuzzy Wuzzies also comes on behind the column too

The Sudanese have survived the first attack and turned to fight back

Fortunately, the Fuzzies have failed their command throw so do nothing this turn

But next time they sweep forward to attack the Camel Corps

The machine gunners watch in horror

The Camel Corps were busy with enemy to their front so this attack on their rear is most unwelcome

The Royal Artillery continue to do their stuff though

The Sudanese have seen off the enemy cavalry and now turn to present a line towards the Fuzzy Wuzzies

The wagons have caught up with the Scots who are now in line and firing at the enemy ahead

The Camel Corps manage to turn to face the Fuzzies but they are still mounted and at a disadvantage

In fact, they are destroyed in the next round of melee

Just as the Sudanese think they can fire a volley into the flank of the Fuzzies, another previously unseen big war band of them charges into their flank

They fall back disordered

and things get even worse - Mahdist riflemen appear on the crest on the flank of the Scots

Fresh Mahdist foot appear over by the port

The Scots are getting hit by fire into their flank now

The Fuzzy Wuzzies drive on again, forcing the battered Sudanese back again and the artillery is now left exposed - the gunners flee.

The Fuzzies get into hand to hand combat with the battered Sudanese infantry

and they are completely destroyed

The Lancers have watched all this in the distance

but its their turn now as hordes of enemy are descending on them

They fall under the enemy spears and the day is lost for the British commander - the Queen will not be amused when the Prime Minister has to tell her ! 

Sunday 21 March 2021

Burn That Down !

 Last Friday, I was pleased to welcome my old friend Benito in Madrid for a game of Infamy, Infamy ! via the wonders of Zoom.

We originally met many years ago through the Lard Community at a rather boozy session at The Fox by The Excel Centre when Too Fat Lardies had forgotten to get a table in the hall so Richard Clarke had decided we would spend the day in the pub instead !

Benito also kindly came to my hotel on the outskirts of Madrid armed with some good Spanish red wine some years later when I was on a two week tour of Wellington's battlefields in the Peninsula.

Anyway, fast forward to the age of lockdown and here we are wargaming via our computers and iPads.

Benito had helped out with the play testing of Infamy but has not had a chance to play since it has been published - well, we had to put that right ! 

He chose an Imperial Roman force against my Barbarians in Germania.

Before the game, the Infamy Terrain Generator came up with this battlefield. All we had to add was the location of the Roman Limes Tower which we diced for at the beginning of the game. (It ended up on the left hand side of the river at the bottom of the picture).  The Romans were to deploy from top right, the Barbarians bottom left - plus ambush points which the Romans would attempt to discover.

Right from the off, the Barbarian commander rushed forces forward to engage the Tower and get those faggots of wood burning. The Roman defenders threw their pila to try and fend them off.

The Barbarian War Lord arrives with his main force to add to the Tower defenders problems

Roman Auxiliaries have deployed in skirmish order and hurry to try and relieve the Tower

Barbarian slingers emerge from a wooded hill to harass them

Now the Roman Centurion rushes on with his main force

Roman Allied cavalry are sent forward rapidly to disrupt the enemy at the Tower

Roman slingers and archers join the action - the latter in a fire fight with the slingers opposite

The Centurion needs to get his Legionaries across to the Tower as quickly as possible

The archers have moved beside the Auxiliaries to keep up their supporting fire

But over at the Tower, the burning has commenced - 5 points out of a needed 20 so far - but the enemy cavalry have arrived causing problems

A small war band is detached to skirt around the Tower to worry the cavalry

The slingers are adding their weight of fire as the Centurion urges his men on

The Roman Allied cavalry threw their javelins and then charged into combat

but they are pushed back by the Barbarians, so the burning can resume 

The Legion is moving too slowly for the Centurion's purpose

The Tower guards see the flames licking up the sides of the walls 

Indeed, the magic score of 20 is reached quickly and the fate of the Tower is sealed - the Centurion has failed to rescue his men in the Tower in time

Screams are heard across the battlefield as the guards refuse to surrender - well, actually they weren't given that option if we are honest !

No doubt Benito will be looking for revenge very soon. I think he enjoyed the game despite the tardiness of the Roman legionaries this time.