Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Aahhhhhh - End of Term

Got my last set of marks posted for the semester this morning.  It's all over but the crying and I can relax.  There are some who say that Alice Cooper is the one to play for moments like this, but I was never much of an Alice fan.

So I will post an alternate end of school video...

This movie came out in my final year of high school, the same year that I had tickets to see the Ramones at  the Hammersmith Odeon.  Unfortunately they cancelled due to illness and I never got to see them.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Savos Island Game 2 Photos

I received the photos from Curt last night.  These are from the second of our two games with Sylvain running the Royal Navy and Newbie Jeremy the Regina Marina.
The British maneuver in two columns on the right, zig zagging to avoid torpedoes.  On the left the Italian picket DD is under fire (one of Curt's wonderful splash markers) and a torpedo spread marked by the post-it arrow which didn't post to Curt's mat.

Same situation from above and behind the Royal Navy.

HMS Orion finds the spread of torpedoes, but Sylvain steam on undaunted. 

The lead two cruisers are Curt's, the rest are mine.  Another Litko marker marks the end of the Orion.

Curt was obviously fixated on this moment

Torpedoes launched everywhere as the Royal Navy splits and opens fire with full broadside.  An Italian cruiser sinks in the middle of Jeremy's line.  Sylvain has pulled a fast one and done a simultaneous 180 degree turned away with the group at the bottom.

Same situation in close up.

Close up of the Tribal class DDs at the end of Sylvain's line.

Royal Navy cruisers and DD.  That's Curt's HMS Exeter to the left, formerly at the head of the line and now tail end charlie.  She is preceded by HMSs Gloucester, Eurylaus and a destroyer (all my models).  The post its mark Sylvain's position at the start of the move prior to his Uey.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Battles at Savos Islands - Film at 11

Recently our group played out two trials of a WW2 naval scenario based on the Battle of Savo island, but translated to the 1941 Mediterranean theatre.  I relabelled the islands so that Guadacanal became Kaktos, Savo became Savos and Florida became Floros.  The linguists, Hellenes and classic scholars among you can alert me if have insulted any one's grandmother or personal hygiene with these names.

Pictures from the first game can be seen over at Padre Mike's.  The second took place on Friday with new players - Sylvain took the RN and newbie Jeremy the Italians.  Also, I rotated the seascape so that the entrance to Savos sound ran across the broader side of the table to limit the funnel effect.  Curt took pictures which have not arrived in my inbox yet.  I thought I'd get some thoughts down before they ran away and avoid the issues with reporting on the recent El Cid game.

Orders of battle were as follows.  In addition, both sides were given dummy counters and blinds were used until forces were visually acquired.  Photo 10 on Mike's page show the Padre moving merchant men which were used as possible contacts until confirmed as real ships or dummies.

Royal Navy (may be grouped into two divisions and enter on southern board edge at 20 kts.)

  •             Exeter CL armour 6*8” guns, 32 kts., radar 
  •             Ajax, Achilles, Orion CL armour 8*6” guns 32kts, radar 
  •             Gloucester CA armour, 12*6”, 32 kts., no radar
  •             Arethusa, CL armour 6*6” guns 32kts, radar 
  •             Euryalus, CL armour 10*5.25" guns, 32kts, radar 
  •             Destroyers Mohawk, Maori, Nubian, 6*4.7”+2*4” guns, 4 torpedoes, 31kts radar 
Regina Marina 
Group A
  • Trento CL armour 8*8” guns 31kts
  • Gorizia CA armour 8*8” guns 30kts
  •  Bande Nerra CS armour 8*6” guns 32kts
  •  Destroyers Ascari, Bersagleri, Fucilieri 5*4.7” guns, 6 torpedoes, 35kts
Group B

  • G Garibaldi CA armour 10*6” guns 31kts
  • Bolzano CL armour 8*8” guns 33kts
  •  Luigi Cadorna CS armour 8*6” guns 32kts
  • Destroyers Dardo, Freccia, Saetta 4*4.7” guns, 6 torpedoes, 31kts
      None of the Italian ships have radar.   Each group was allocated a box to patrol either side of Savos, and each group was able to detach one DD as picket.  All ships start at 20 kts.

Game One
Curt split his Royal Force into two groups sending HMSs Gloucestor, Euryalus, Exeter and Nubian against Group A east of Savos and HMSs Ajax, Orion, Achilles, Mohawk and Moari west of the island against Group B.  Both of Curt's divisions ran into picket destroyers and opened fire.  West of Savos, a rain of 6" shells sank the Freccia, but had trouble finding the main body.  The Freccia launched her torpedoes but these missed as Curt zigged to the east.

The fight was decided in the eastern passage.  While once again Curt's firepower did in the picket (in this case the Bersaglieri, in this case her fish hit home.  Both the Nubian (twice) and Euryalus were hit -3 hits in a stick of 6 torpedoes.  Mike's photo 11 shows the moment of impact.  While Curt found the reset of Mike's eastern group, his torpedoes missed as Mike turned away to comb the tracks and his guns managed only a few hits.  Mike's Photo 12 shows the Italians turning away.

At this point Curt turned tail and ran for home, homing to get his lame ducks home before the Stukas arrived.

Game Two
Sylvain split his force into two divisions, but kept both on the west side of Savos island facing Group A.    Again, the RN found the picket first - leaving the Ascari badly mauled but afloat (destroyers are easy to cripple but hard to kill using guns)- and moved on to take on Group A.   Ascari's torpedoes found a target sending Orion to the bottom, but Sylvain pressed on.  Meanwhile Jeremy's Group B was having a hard time working out that all of the "British" possible contacts east of Savos were actually ducks.  When the shooting started, he sent this group West of the island.

After a few turns of ineffective shooting on both sides - Sylvain started to hit home.  My ship cards show that Trento, Bande Nere, Ascari and Bersaglieri from group A were all hit badly while Group B arrived in time for Saetta to be sunk.  If memory serves me (an unlikely event these days), the Italians lost at least one of their cruisers to torpedoes.  However, we didn't note this on the ship cards as we opted for the simpler method of removing the model!  If and when the photos arrive, hopefully all we be revealed!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Interesting Naval Post

Naval Warfare is one of the blogs I follow.  Today's post covers the USS Idaho and Mississippi - but not perhaps the ones you're thinking of!  This pair was sold to the Greek Navy just prior to WWI.

By my reckoning, the pair could be factored into the following conflicts

  • Pre-dreadnought era what ifs (they originally appeared in White and Buff)
  • Balkan Wars what of (assuming the sale took place in 1912 not 1914)
  • World War I
  • Post War Greek-Turkey Wars
  • World War II (ok one was disarmed but what if...)
I think that they'd look right at home in the Fezian and Rusland Navies.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Crossing Point - Conclusion?

Here are the remaining photos from our recent (or not recent enough to remember completely) El Cid game.   The chronicles are hazy on the end result, but the pictorial evidence seems to indicate an Aragonese victory.

The Aragonese column approaches the bridge.  The Caballeros Villanos are clearly showing the scars from their combat on the bridge.  But there are two units of Hidalgos waiting to take up the struggle.  Stacy had a lot of problems with poor activation rolls here trying to get the proud nobles in take orders!

This time the Hidalgos come over the bridge with more in support.  The Zaragosans are also hurting after their clash with the Villanos.

As the sign says....

Here the charge swept away the Zaragosan horse and has closed with Frankish mercenary foot.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

El Cid Game - Part The Second

In our continuing saga, the Christian Spanish are trying to force a river crossing before the Andalusian reinforcements arrive.

Hmm, I do need to replace the missing spears and lances ...

Stacy's militia cavalry has pushed back the moorsih horse defending the bridge.  Sylvain has turned his mercenary crossbow to give flanking fire.

Yes I need to work on the spears....

Sylvain brings up a unit of infantry to block the exit from the bridge

This is going to be ugly!!

Close captioning provided by Curt to help those unfortunates who are hard of figuring our the blindingly obvious.  Note the amount of blood shed in this fight.

Stay tuned for the next instalment, to see how it all turned out - or not as none of us can remember who won.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Recent El Cid Game

A few weeks back we played a game of Hail Caesar at Casa Campbell, using my El Cid armies.  I got the pics last night from Curt so I thought I'd post them.  I am having an academic moment regarding how the game played out and a few details escape me (like who won!).

However  IIRC, the following fuzzy details emerge

  • We used the crossing point scenario from C S Grants "Programmed Wargame Scenarios"

  • Sylvain had the Andalusians and was defending the crossing while Stacy had the Christian Spanish attackers.  I acted as GM assisted by Curt - who was suffering from post traumatic Painting Challenge disorder (and likely caffeine withdrawal given that Sarah was out of town and he apparently can't make coffee on his own).
  • The defenders have a few troops on table and the rest arrive throughout the game.  For all the scenarios in this book, the size, nature, deployment and arrival times are all randomly determined.  In this case Sylvain had 1 infantry unit, some crossbows and Maybe a cavalry unit on table.  The dice ruled that they were all on his own side of the bridge (they could have been on the far side or split between the two).
  • It was a near run thing on the bridge, but damned if I can remember what happened once Stacey got to the other side.
The first set of photos follow.  The troops are mine, the table and marker are Curt's.  Curt took the photos - which is why they turned out legibly.

Initial Andalusian deployment

Christian light cavalry coming thru the rye.

Christian militia cavalry charge over the bridge.

Apparently they moved so fast that their hooves didn't touch the roadbed of the bridge.

TheSpanish cavalry division charges while the infantry slogs along in the rear.

Cavalry traffic jam

Light cavalry trade shots with the mercenary crossbowmen - note Curt's gory casualty marker.

Slow progress by the PBI - slingers in the lead followed by Ballesteros (the xbows not the golfer).

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Recent Gaming

Our group has had a couple of games of late.
Two weeks ago, we had a Hail Caesar game using my El Cid troops.  A battle report will appear when Curt (prod, prod) sends me the photos he took.  I've been patient with the lad since he was dealing with the last frantic rush of the Painting challenge and new puppies at the same time.

This weekend we had a visit from the Mad Padre.  I missed the Friday night grey scale WW1 game unfortunately due to unexpected family events.  I regrettably also had to pass on the Saturday aft toy soldier game due to scheduling conflicts- one day I have to see John's stuff on table.

Saturday evening we went to Med for WW2 naval and fought the battle of Savos (transplanted from Guadalcanal).  I think Pics and write up will follow from Mike.