Wednesday, 21 October 2015

For Parliament and Expense Claims!

It is now dark when I set out for the club so "the nights are fair drawing in" as we say north of the border or nowadays "get that bloody ref." Anyway it was a miserable night as I braved the traffic coming out of Lancaster, Andy was setting up a 28mm Black Powder ECW game and as usual he arrived weighted down like a pack mule. There were only three of us so Andy umpired while I took Parliament and immediately started totting up my expense claim for later, while Simon came out for the King.
The Cavaliers deploy.

Parliament deploys.
 Andy had intended to do a scenario but as it was a club night and we were short of time we just put down two forces opposite each other and had to, or stood around as it turned out. Simon is not as experienced at this kind of warfare as many of us and he straight away threw three cavalry charges at my line, needless to say I was surprised and they were easily beaten off with two cavalry troops dispersing and a third knocked back behind their lines. 

Prepare to receive cavalry.
Both lines now commenced a firefight all along the line, I withdrew my own cavalry out of range of the muskets but not of the artillery and lost one troop to continuous fire from a big gun on a hill. The only real damage done by this waste of lead was Simon losing his dismounted dragoons.
The line holds and opens fire.
 I now saw an opening, opposite my right there was only one regiment and the gun on the hill, I decided to launch a troop of cavalry supported by dragoons and a further regiment from the commanders brigade. Off went the cavalry and dragoons but the commanders brigade simply refused to move. Now this is what I dislike about this set of rules and similar ones, why on earth if the Army commander orders his men to do something under his very nose would they all refuse, where is the historical evidence for such a thing. The upshot of course was that my plan to assault the enemy left fell apart.

Let's just pretend we didn't hear 'im.
I did eventually manage to get the regiment into an attack position but I remain sceptical whether it actually had the range or not to charge not knowing the rules, in they went along with the cavalry and we then spent some time looking for an explanation of who had actually won the melee. In the end it was deemed that Simon had lost one musketeer unit and my cavalry had had to retire, so I was left in the better position at the end of it. I claimed victory only because I had killed more of Simon's units than he did of mine, from a military point of view if his regiment lost the next round of melee he would have had infantry, cavalry and dragoons ready to fall on his flank, on the other hand if he had won then I think we would again have gone back to a stalemate and resumed the firefight.

Decision time.
I know the rules are for huge, simple games and Andy has huge armies but I still don't like them and I was disappointed there was no index in the rules to help when we needed clarification. Elsewhere there was a Bloodbowl game and a large Frostgrave game, I don't get the Frostgrave thing, I have played it and it was enjoyable but interest seems to have reached fever pitch in the wargaming community putting it on a par with Lion Rampant, but of course I would be biased as fantasy has never been my thing, I can admire it from afar but that's it really. Having said that I am doing Dystopian Wars next week, I can do sci-fi no problem and I have seen the huge collection Simon has so I am looking forward to this.

Now £400 should be about right to put in front of the Speaker for a nights entertaining.


  1. For me Black Powder are far to a generic set of rules, I understand with the army lists you can change them to fit the period but I still prefer rules which are period based, but hey that's me?? Like you, I just don't get what all the fuss is about Frostgrave??? Its just another set of skirmish rules and Fantasy ones at that?? (I don't do fantasy either). Apart from a few Zombie games the Rejects once had when The Lurker still lived in Blighty.

  2. I have to agree, I fought a battle last night which just happened to have ECW figures on the table, it could have been anything as I did not get a sense that I was engaged with the period, despite the lovely troops brought by Andy. A friend of mine has written the ECW supplement for the rules, maybe that will change things.

  3. Interesting that you used the black powder rules instead of Pike and Shotte. I've tried both and Pike and Shotte whilst based of Black Powder is a complete war game with points and structured rules for the period. If you haven't tried them you should check them out i think you will enjoy them more.

    And your not alone i don't get the Frostgrave hype either - i guess with the demise of Warhammer fantasy battle people are just trying to fill the gap.

    1. Hi Mark, I see what you mean I must be confused, Andy just called the rules Black Powder and I didn't get a close look at the book, it must have been Pike and Shotte. The period has always intrigued me but I only got as far as buying Forlorn Hope.