Saturday, 28 February 2009

Raid on Oberstein

A game using 40mm figures

Recently there has been a number of minor incidents on the southern broder of Wittenberg with Saxe-Jarslberg (an ally of Monrovia). The corp of observation has mounted extra patrols, garrisons are on the alert and the local militia have been called up.

A representative of the Wittenberg army paymaster is on his way to one of the southern garrison towns with the pay for the troops. The spies of Saxe-Jarlsberg have learnt of this and the command staff have decided to capture the coach and take the money. They decide to intercept the paymaster at Oberstein. Oberstein is a supply relay point for the southern garrison towns, so if they miss the coach they have been ordered to take all the supplies and livestock they can find.

The forces of Saxe-Jarlsberg crossed the River Oudear at Vanderhof with a regiment of infantry (5 companies), a company of jagers and dragoons. Two companies of infantry hold the main river crossing while the rest move on to Oberstein, some of the dragoons are despatched on flanking patrols to watch out for Uhlans.

--oxo--

The local woodsman spots the approaching column and runs to Oberstein to warn them, the women and children take refuge in the church while the men decide to defend the supplies held in the barn. Riders are sent to get help, the church bell is rung to attract the attention of any nearby patrols.

The Saxe-Jarlsberg troops enter Oberstein, the dragoons race ahead as they are tasked with capturing the paymasters coach. Jagers ford the small river...

The rest of the column arrives and starts to cross the bridge. The dragoons are on the move and the two jager companies move forward, one towards the road and the other in the direction of the barn.

Hearing gun fire and seeing the dragoons on the edge of Oberstein the paymasters coach turns and heads back up the road, while their Uhlan escort moves closer to investigate. A jager patrol in the woods approaches having heard the church bells.

Meanwhile in the village one of the infantry companies has been held up by fire from the house by the bridge, the local highwayman Black Jack Davy who was hiding out there with some of his henchman opened fire (he has an intense dislike of the Monrovians and their allies).

The Saxe-Jarlsberg dragoons try to catch-up with the coach.

However they are too late and end up in a standoff, a local militia company has also arrived. Their position on the road keeps the Wittenberg troops away from Oberstein allowing time for the infantry to secure the town.

The leading grenadier company takes up position blocking the road to the nearest garrison town. A Wittenberg jager patrol, which arrived to investigate the bells ringing, has taken refuge in the woods where it is pinned down with fire from the Saxe-Jarlsberg grenadiers and jagers.

A detachment of jagers enter the house by the bridge and after a some desperate fighting have control. Black Jack Davy, seeing no troops nearby makes a run for it to the tavern across the street.

A company of militia and regulars arrive but find they are outnumbered, two more companies of Saxe-Jarslberg infantry are just entering Oberstein..

The Saxe-Jarlsberg troops now have control of the town, and set about trying to get into the barn for the supplies; the barn is resolutely defended by the locals...

Wittenberg troops approach but hold back they have insufficent numbers to attack ..
After having held the barn for some time, the locals give up and run as they see a full company of infantry preparing to storm the barn ...

The Saxe-Jarlsberg troops start removing the supplies from the barns and get ready to round up any livestock.

The Wittenberg troops have no choice but to let the enemy do what they like. They have insufficient forces to mount an attack on the town, besides which the local militia are not keen on advancing against such a large number of enemy regulars.

Sunday, 22 February 2009

Wittenberg - Mysterious Documents (4), Deciphered ?

Scene: the cottage in the palace gardens, the partially deciphered documents are being discussed; the King arrives wearing his favourite hat. Count Hermann of Munster, Brother James and Georg Cantor are present.


King: Good day gentlemen

Count: Your Majesty, Cantor of the Royal Society has made a breakthrough, thanks to the researches of Brother James. Perhaps Brother James can tell us you some background first ?

Brother James: Yes of course. I have confirmed that the first page shows the symbol of the Order or Sect of the Phoenix. They have been in existence at least since medieval times and possibly are older than that; they are supposed to have been suppressed by the inquisition. The sect's beliefs are somewhat odd and seem to be a blend of alchemy, gnosticism, hindoo tantra; their practices include some form of alchemical technique of sexual ecstacy. There motto loosely translated from the Latin is 'Happy the man who has been able to discover the causes of things'. It is this motto which was the key to unlock some of the text in the documents. Mr Cantor will you continue.

Cantor: I examined the text under the Phoenix device, I tried a reversal of the Alberti Cipher, out came the motto in latin. The next line cameout as 'three times the fool'. The next paragraph didn't translate at all, neither did the next. So I continued to examine the rest of the pages, these consist of a list and nine separate pages in the form of letters. The list page translated into a list of the major cities of Europa, some of these had been crossed out, there were 9 left uncrossed. The rest of the pages had the city on the top, but the reverse cipher did not translate the text of the letters, I assume they have different keys or methods of encryption. The obvious conclusion is that the man in the possession of these papers was a courier.

King: How fascinating, where had he been and what cities were not crossed out ?

Cantor: From the places he had crossed out on the list he had travelled through a numer of countries : Sweden, Germania, Duchy of Stollen, Russia, the Duchy of Grolstein, the Imperium, Saxe-Bearstein, Stagonia and the Duchy of Fenwick. Capitials not crossed out on the list were of: Wittenberg, Monrovia, Noverre, Gallia, Hanover, Holland, Denmark, Brittania and Ireland. There is more of interest, I thought about 'three times a fool', I skipped the first three paragraphs on the phoenix symbol page, the rest of the text translated as follows -

To Whom It may concern,

congratulations on translating the cipher; as you have achieved this we assume you are intelligent and blessed with the faculties of reason. We would like the papers returned as they contain private correspondence of a sensitive nature; if Count Revolvendors is dead then we would also like to obtain his personal belongings. Place an advert in your local paper 'Found - Manuscript titled 'Far Horizons' and contact information - we will respond in due course.

You will be suitably rewarded.

Count: That is not all, there were a set of travel diaries found in the coach. These were meticulaously numbered. There contents were rather indelicate, they read like the journals of a Don Juan. There was one diary missing from the set; diary no 15 finishes on his arrival in Saxe-Bearstein, diary 17 starts in the Duchy of Fenwick. Diary 16 is missing - the last but one place name crossed out in the list translated by Cantor is the capital of Stagonia; it is possible that he was killed for that diary - it probably contains details of some indisgression.

King: Do you think this sect is a front for spies ?

Count: Possibly, if so they have many contacts, and it may be worth being in favour with them; they probably already know we have the papers.

King: How so ?

Count: I've had some strange enquiries over the last week from some of the nobility, asking about rumours about papers and such, nothing direct though. I think we better return the papers don't you your majesty ?

King: Yes I agree. The secrets of secret societies are best left secret. Count, make the necessary arrangements .. Hmm time for afternoon tea, I must change my hat and join my lady wife ... Oh Brother James, walk with me and tell me more about the practices of this Sect of the Pheonix.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

40mm - Civilians

I treated myself to a pack of Sash & Sabre FIW civilians (I've painted up these for a little gaming scenario).


Sunday, 15 February 2009

Now Departing for Tragardland ...

Count Hermann of Munster says goodbye to Count Getja Bootzon before he departs as ambassador to Tragardland.


He will be accompanied on his journey by Colonel Alexander von Messing, who will be joining the Tradgardland life guard.

Von Messing received a number of presents from his friends and family. A new hat form the King, a new horse and accoutrements from his uncle the Duke of Escherstadt, a new blackened cuirass from General Waldebeck, and a commanders staff from the Field Marshal.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Wittenberg - Boldovian Army Corps Review

Its been a busy week of prepartions for the Boldovian army corps review. The review is being held at Heidelheim in the province of Upper Belgravia, all the units of the army corps having moved into this province due to the military build up by Monrovia. The review is just about to start ...

All the units are ready and in position ...

The members of the court who accompanied the King and local dignitaries, are gathered in one of the bastions to view the proceedings ...

To keep them entertained the guard horse band is present; they will also play suitable music for the march past ..

King Leopold IV rides out of Heidelheim accompanied by his general staff; the fortess guns fire a salute ..

Before the march pass the King rides round to inspect the assembled troops

First to march past are Dragoon Regiments No1 and No2.

They are followed by the light troops, the Red Pulk of Uhlans and the Jagers

Next the converged grenadier battalion and the artillery ...

Infantry regiments No11 (red facings) and No12 (green facings)

Finally, Infantry regiments No9 (blue facings) and No10 (yellow facings)

After the review the army corps will dipserse to its forward positions in Upper Belgravia.

Cavalry figures for secondary nations ...

I sampled a couple of Dixon Miniatures 25mm SYW range cavalry figs recently, I rather like them and will use them for my 'secondary nations'. Size comparison piccy below: Old Glory fig (left), Dixon Prussian Dragoon (centre), Elite Miniatures (right).

Thursday, 12 February 2009

A Peg in the Ground ...

Well the original planned units for Wittenberg and Monrovia are now all finished; the planned size was:

4 battalions line infantry.
1 converged grenadier battalion.
1 battalion of fusliers.
1 jager battalion.
4 cavalry regiments (2'heavy' + 2 dragoons).
1 light cavalry regiment (hussar or uhlan).
4 artillery gun models.

Wittenberg has two extra cavalry regiments, that are going to form part of their next army corps. Lots of things to add yet, plus lots of potential for future gaming.

It's taken me 2 years and seven months to obtain and paint all those units. It would have taken less time but I have been working on other gaming projects - the main diversion being ECW. The journey to this point started properly in June 2006, when I started my online wargame diary recording my progress. I moved to blogland in March 2007, enabling me to reach and interact with the wider net-community.

One of my favourite 'vignettes' from my previous posts ...

King Leopold IV and his son Prince Wilhelm review the Wittenland fusiliers
Its been great watching the steady increase in the number of Imagi-Nations, with their goings on, interacting via EvE.

Finally a short message from the King Leopold of Wittenberg -
"Greetings and felicitations - may your nation prosper and be victorious on the battlefield".

--oxo--

I better get on and hold the Wittenberg Boldavian army corps review, hopefully the next post.

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Wittenberg - Infantry Regiment on the March

The last regiment of the Boldavian army corps has completed their muster and is on route to Heidelheim for the review.

After crossing the bridge they continue their march (a shot showing my new river section. I've been reading Table Top Teasers Vol1 and liked the idea of a section with an island).

[figs: Infantry-Front Rank, except mounted officer Old Glory, drummer RSM; Pack horses, one set from Irregular Miniatures (at the back) and the other converted from plastic toy animals using greenstuff]

'Secondary Nations' - Artillery

I decided to start on the secondary nations with the artillery, I had some guns already painted but was not happy with the gun crew, so I bought a pack of Old Glory Prussian Artillery crew and sorted them into sets of 4 figs, enough for 4 guns, rest consigned to spares for conversion.

Here we go then, firstly from Monrovia's ally, Hesse-Limburger ..

Next Wittenberg's ally, the Duchy of Fenwick (uniforms based on Hanover) ..

I have two crew sets left to paint, and also I need to buy two more guns and limbers.
The last battalion of the Wittenberg Boldovian army corps is nearly finished, it's sitting on the painting table waiting final 'touch-up' and basing. When that's done I can get started on the little pile of RSMs I have.
[figs: Gun Crew - Old Glory; Guns + Limber - Irregular Miniatures]

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Wittenberg - Field Marshal

Field Marshall Duke Frederick of Wittenbuffel, commander of the Wittenberg armed forces, was recently awarded the 'Order of the North Star'. He has just had it put on his best uniform ready for the upcoming review of the Boldavian army corps.

I've just finished giving my Wittenberg commander a bit of refurbishment, so inspired by the medal post on ColCampbell's Barracks blog (http://colcampbellbarracks.blogspot.com/2009/02/miniature-medal.html) I added the 'Order of the North Star' to his coat. I did the star by outlining in black pen, using light gold pen for the middle and a dot of bright gold paint for the centre.


Sunday, 1 February 2009

Ambassador departs for Saxe-Bearstein

Count Hermann of Munster gives Count Wilhelm Hatzof (in the grey) his final instructions before he departs as ambassador to Saxe-Bearstein. He will be accompanied by Major-General Heinrich von Bose (form the Duchy of Fenwick) who will act as military attache. The purpose of the visit is to discuss and coordinate a response to the activities of Stagonia.