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Saturday 18 June 2022

The cost of Empire

 Today, we did a scenario where a company of His Majesties 22nd regiment of foot are in East Africa trying to capture a town which has been arming and supporting rebels.

We randomised officers and amazingly, Mick, in his first game got command! He decided to role play an arrogant, overconfident officer who had bought his commission, Phil and I both rolled '1'!!! - and ended up with new, inexperienced Lieutenants. Lawrence, playing a senior sergeant was the only average commander we had!

Our deployment area, the target village in the distance.

Lawrence's lovely town, and my ring road.
Its been a while since Lawrence had his leather sheets out for us to fight on.
Mick deployed us spread out-- I am on the left here and Mick on the right.
Phil, in the centre started the game out of command and his men just moved in column onto the table!
Lawrence, on our right wing filtered through the trees.
Mick's command group moved into the open.
I guarded his left flank.
Phil kept parallel with us, way out on the right. 
A party of Arab musketeers opened fire...they had spotted my group advancing! 
2 groups of skirmishers had appeared to harry us!
My Corporal was hit and collapsed.
The Arabs, unable to see my force (save the NCO they shot!) turned towards our erstwhile Commander! They lost a man to fire from his men.
Mick's men suffered 2 men wounded...
...A further man was killed!
Having reloaded, Mick, supported by Phil shredded the annoying skirmishers.
With the loss of my corporal, I failed to keep control of my force, and they chose to move forward in column...straight into the enemy!
The second skirmisher group now fired on Mick's men.
With the survivors of the first group streaming past, a couple of the Arabs shot at my men, and killed my Sergeant!
My men carried on turning right to fire back, as Mick and Phil combined their shots.
Being shot from behind by a third group of skirmishers, my men chose to engage to front.
The Arabs were being very effective, and killed another of Mick's men.
Lawrence, meanwhile, had marched to the edge of town, and ran into a large group of Arab militia.
His fire only killed one of the enemy, who were hiding on a hill in bushes.
The third group to my rear was happy to snipe at me at long range.
A couple more of my men were hit.
The few Arabs facing Mick and Phil were refusing to flee.
Lawrence was surprised, as the Militia charged him!
Despite their poor equipment, the Militia were winning the melee!
Mick and my men fired and killed all but one Arab, who steadfastly held his ground! - he even fired at Mick's men.
Unfortunately the fire from my rear continued to hit my men...
...who finally had enough and broke!
Lawrence was still fighting the militia, and losing...
...so his men finally broke and ran too!
How embarrassing!
Phil had moved up in support, and fired a volley.
Several Militiamen fell!
And the rest retreated back behind the buildings.
With half the English troops in rout, the remainder called off the attack and fell back, no doubt to be lambasted by the rest of the regiment!

The hero of the day, though, was Ali Mispa - the lone skirmisher, who refused to rout and just retreated back to the town!
A complete disaster! - I don't think we have ever been so trounced by the solo system!

Fun game though!

Saturday 11 June 2022

All at sea!

 Today, we had a Coastal Forces game using my own rules - once again we used German Schnellbooten against a coastal convoy.

We (Phil, Lawrence and myself) each had 2 boats, and it was my first outing for the new movement templates and ship/torpedo markers.

The convoy was a random mix of dummy markers and real ships, escorts on the left column, merchantmen on the other two.
Phil got lucky first, spotting a 2000 tonner chugging along...
I spotted an Isles class trawler and another 2000 tonner.
Lawrence rapidly spotted 2 3000 tonners, worthy targets for our 'Fish' notwithstanding - but where was the Tanker, our primary target?
...there weren't many unspotted counters left!
I spotted another 3000 tonner behind the trawler.
Phil had spotted a requisitioned Trawler and another 2000 tonner.
Phil, and the others, were still cruising on electric motors so we would be harder to spot.
I split my boats to... 
...try to bypass the Trawler in my way.
Lawrence had spotted another requisitioned Trawler but it was not in a good position to stop him.
Phil only had 2000 tonners accessible, that Trawler was in a dangerous position for him.
I decided to 'up the ante ' and raced forward on diesel engines, I shot a torpedo off at the 3000 tonner I had spotted.
My right hand boat was already looking for better targets.
Lawrence had shot a Fish too, the 3000 Tonner spotted it and turned to try and 'comb' the torpedo.
I spotted a Trawler and some lighters - woo hoo! Target of the week!!!!!
I wondered what the last counter was hiding!!!!!
My torpedo hit! - but the ship sailed on, my 'Fish' had exploded in the ship's wake, causing little damage! (We had determined it was full of ammo, so where was the 'Boom!')
Lawrence got a hit on his ship too, and disabled it, its engines and power were out.
My second boat, under fire from the Isles Trawler shot of both his Torpedoes.
Lawrence had a Fish going for the same ship, surely it was doomed?
My first boat broke though the convoy in hope of getting a good target.
Phil's boats had crippled the guns on the small trawler with their cannon, and now shot a torpedo at a 2000 Tonner.
The Merchantman spotted the attack and successfully combed the torpedo. 
Damnably close one, that!
My torpedoes ran in on the 3000 Tonner Lawrence had damaged...
The ship slowed and turned, making both my Torpedoes miss!
Lawrence got another hit on a 3000 tonner, but it exploded short like mine, something wrong with our torpedoes methinks!
Phil's last torpedo got a hit on the last 3000 Tonner, and blew it up! - We got one!
Well, that was a weird game! Only one Merchant ship sunk and 2 damaged! A thorough waste of torpedoes!!!!

We followed this game with one of 'The Sorcerer's Cave' a game from the 1970's. Lawrence won this one as Phil got turned to stone and I got smashed up by an Ogre!