Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Plans

Happy Holidays internet friends!
And a happy upcoming New Year!

I have the unbelievably good fortune to be able to come home (Phoenix, AZ) this year for Christmas. So, when you are reading this, I'll be winging my way stateside for a little R&R. Since no trip could be separated from my hobbies, I've got lots of gaming plans lined up for while I'm home. Here's a little look into what we've got lined up this holiday season.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

King of the Playtesters

Ok, so you may have read about this silly little tournament we held at BFHQ on the Flames Of War website (found here...). Anyway, I chose list 5 from my previous post, the Romanian motorized infantry company. It was a solid list and netted me two 6:1 victories. I was shooting to win the title, but had to bow out because we lost a man during round three. Oh well! There's always next year. Anyway here's a quick rundown of my two games and my slightly modified List Number 5.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Silly Little 1000-point Forces


Right! We've reached the end of the year and its time to partake in a time-honored tradition called King of the Playtesters. Now, I should qualify that in two ways, perhaps three: 1. Its not actually "time-honored" as this is the first year for this prestigious title, and 2. Its just king of the local playtest group, not all of groups globally. Perhaps one day we can hold an Emperor of the Playtesters event, but that may have to wait until the invention of Trekkian Transporters. And finally, just in case you were wondering, no I'm not going to discuss playtesting!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Schnapps and Wrenches

A few nights ago Patrick and I ran a game with his SS versus my US Combat Engineers. The scenario was Fighting Withdrawal with me attacking. That suited me just fine as my engineers will probably be asked to attack a few times during upcoming Shifting Sands event. So the mission was to test my troops' offensive capability...and my ability to absorb copious amounts of alcohol.

The battlefield from behind German lines. Three SS-Panzergrenadier platoons have been deployed along the road, frustrating my ability to get my TDs into a good position.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Spooky!

So, I've added a new model to my 'Nam range. Its a bit unconventional and not at all official, however I hope someday it will be! In US military terms its called an AC-47, but it was more commonly known as either "Spooky" or "Puff" (the Magic Dragon). It was a standard C-47 equipped with three fixed 7.62mm miniguns mounted pointing out of three windows on the pilot's side of the aircraft. The Spooky would circle over the target and the pilot would let loose with up to 21,000 rounds, aimed through an old fighter sight. A good pilot could place a round in every square foot of a football field sized target in a three-second burst.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

I Need Another Weekend!

Wow, what a week! I'm absolutely exhausted after a very long, yet fun week. So, I wasn't able to get a lot done in blog-land, but I'll catch you up on the week's activities.

Now that everything seems to be getting back to normal, I'm excited to get cracking on my promise to deliver a post a week. Hopefully I can generate some content, even if its a little update here and there.

I've got several fun projects lined up and I just need to bust through a few previous painting commitments before I can get to them. The one I really want to get to is a mod for Muskets & Tomahawks, an 18th Century skirmish game. I think it would be suited for skirmish warfare in the American Civil War, and I have a pile of Perry Miniatures ACW figures just waiting to be painted!

I also have a scenario I'm working on about the Murzuk raid, that I'm really dying to get into and no doubt I'll start talking about that very soon. So, without further ado, a week in review:

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Tournaments, Tournaments, and more Tournaments!


Wow, lots has happened since my last post! I've managed to get the computer back up and fully operational in case Admiral Ackbar attempts to blow it up again. So, without further ado, its catch-up time!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Revenge of the Rifles

This week Pat and I ran another game with our LWGT armies. With only a few weeks to go, there's not much more time left for last minute tweaks to our armies. I'm pretty happy with the list and not much fundamental has really changed in my force, but I wanted to try something funky with my company: the Scrapyard Tank Platoon out of Devil's Charge.

By converting my Rifle Company from Turning Tide to Devils Charge, I basically saved 40 points because I don't have the extra 2x HQ Bazookas. Further, I dropped the Bazookas from the anti-tank guns to save 60 more points. What was left I put toward am I&R Platoon to increase my recon screen and up my platoon count to 10 (which is huge, because I can now fully attach out my HMGs and still have 9x platoons)

Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Battle of Battle (1066)

If you are in the United Kingdom, and you follow this blog, the Battle of Hastings should be at the very top of your list of places to visit for several reasons. First, its well preserved for a 900 year-old site (When 900 years old you reach, look as good you will not!). There are so many battlefields of the Dark Ages that have simply disappeared without a trace. The exact location of major battles such as Stamford Bridge, and Brunanburh are lost to archaeologists.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Coming to Terms with US Rifles

Pat's Tiger duals with my 155mm howitzers
I've been doing some reading about the battle of Aachen in October 1944. Its a really interesting battle and its inspired me to run a Big Red One company, hopefully for the FlamesCon 2012 coming up in November. I've never owned a US Rifle Company before, so I found myself completely caught flat-footed in terms of the platoons needed. I have played US Armored Rifles a lot and have pretty much everything for that list, but normal Rifles will require building a lot of the support from scratch. Lucky for me there's a whole new range of US figures in winter gear, so I've been making use of them as much as I can in making my US rifles ready for combat.

Painting them is one thing, playing them is another. The tactics I use for Armored Rifles are completely different and they really suit my aggressive play style. However, regular rifles will take a little re-training. So I gathered up what I had for my list and probably worked out about 20 different forces. I kept hitting the 1575 point ceiling so early with veterans. I even tried several Trained lists, but quickly abandoned them as they didn't fit the theme of the Big Red One. So I eventually just built a list with a sample of everything I wanted and tossed it into a list without any further thought about how they'd work together. Like with any new forces I try out, I figured some combinations and tactics would make themselves clear once I had a few games.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Hastings Castle

Hastings Castle Ruins
Yesterday I was finally able to fulfil a childhood desire: to visit the Battle of Hastings. I forgot just how much 12-year-old me really wanted to visit this site and I was surprised by just how giddy I was leading up to it! So we travelled to Hastings and set up our headquarters. The battle took place several miles to the north, so for the first day we toured the city and had a look at Hastings Castle, which lies in ruin a top the seaward cliffs. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

ze Fwench

This week is a photo dump week! I've discovered some photos of my 1940 French that I've not post before now (at least I think so?).

So here's my Early War French Escadron de Reconnaissance from Blitzkrieg (page 152)!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

SDF Troops

Hi there! Just a very small post this week covering my SDF Rifle Platoon. This is one of the core platoons to a Sudan Rifle Company found on page 138 of Burning Empires. I've got one platoon done, and I'll probably cheat for a bit and mix it in with my 8th Army Rifles until I can get the remaining three platoons done.

Anyway, here's a shot of the platoon for this week's update:

The SDF scouts out a village.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

On Convoy!

My SDF Convoy
This week we return to the Sudan Defense Force with a little attention to their trucks. There is virtually nothing written about the SDF in Libya, however they played a critical role in the Saharan campaign. They not only supplied Kufra with their great convoys, they also garrisoned the Kufra Oases, launched exhaustive search and rescue missions (the see the Tragedy at Kufra), assaulted Jalo Oasis during the ill-fated Operation Agreement, and chased after Lazlo Almasy's Operation Salaam (only narrowly missing the elusive Hungarian count).

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Wasteland Warriors

I'll be getting back to the Sahara this week with my Libyan troops. I figure all of the discussions about the raiders are incomplete without a look into the men that defended the Libyan outposts, so it's about time to have a look at the Italian garrisons of the Fezzan.

The Italian garrisons in the Sahara actually had very few Italian nationals. Most of the personnel were Arabic tribes who have called the Sahara home for nearly two millennium. Indeed a telling statistic from August 1940 that of the 3,632 of the soldiers in the Saharan garrisons only 1,101 were actually native Italians or colonists. The rest were native Libyans. So who are these Libyans?  

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Ride of the Valkyries

I've been really busy lately with all sorts of odds and ends, while also trying to prepare for our epic trip to the UK in about a week's time. So in terms of painting, I've been a bit slack. I've managed to paint a platoon of Libyan riflemen, a pile of SDF trucks, and even some Saga stuff. Hopefully I'll be able to write a bit about each of those soon. But for now:


Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Wattisham Raid

The epic conclusion of Patrick's and my Sealion '44 story was played out a few nights ago in perhaps one of the most dramatic games of Flames Of War I have ever played!

To catch up on the fluff behind this raid, or to read the dramatic tale of the events below, check out this thread on the WWPD forum.

The Wattisham Airfield


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

News & Updates

Calliope Award
Hey guys!

So, I've got a lot of things I'm trying to get done for the blog. It may be a few more days until I can get back into it, so I thought I'd post up a short update with whats been happen'n 'round the studio.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Great Bromley Raid

Our scaled-down rendition of Great Bromley
Last weekend Patrick and I played a raid for WWPD's Operation Sealion 1944. We wanted to put together a fun, dramatic series of games with an accompanying story. Its a two-part story focusing on a pair of raids. The first, featured below, is a glider assault on the Great Bromley radar station. The story so far can be found here... Once the missions are all  done and dusted, I'll compile it all and post up the fully illustrated story.

For now, here's the battlereport! Once again, many thanks to Patrick for the game and writing up the turn summaries!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Battle of Gloucester

A few afternoons ago Patrick Gribble and I played a game for the WWPD Operation Sealion 1944 campaign (found here...). We chose to fight over Gloucester, a critical point on the campaign map of western England.

I decided to defend with my favorite South Alberta Regiment and its accompanying 10th Canadian Infantry Brigade. Patrick took command of a Grenadier Company. What follows is the story of our battle along the approaches to Gloucester. (Many thanks to Patrick for the write up!)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Getting Back On Track

Hey all!

Sorry to have been a little absent. We've had a lot going on and I've been unable or too tired to write up a few articles for the blog. But we're getting back on top of things, so I thought I'd do a quick post with a bunch of things I've been up to in the last few weeks.

Friday, May 18, 2012

2nd Lieutenant Thomas M Haught

Second Lieutenant Thomas M Haught
With an unsual name such as Haught, its easy for me to imagine that I'm related to anyone with the same last name. Of course this isn't true as a recent DNA test has proved that there are indeed a few distinct Haught family lines in the USA. However, I like to think that we share a common bond. That bond runs deeper than any blood. For the Haughts of America, nothing binds us together more than the curse of having to spell out our name slowly to people trying to write it down. That, and perhaps pronouncing and correcting how it is spoken.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Normans, Wargames, and Documentaries

Four SAGA points of Stormin' Normans
One of the advantages to late night feeding times for young Ted is that I can spend the time in between (usually 3-hour stints) to get some painting done. My evening shift usually runs from 6pm to midnight, so I usually get a good six hours of painting in each night, which is more than I had before! I'm sure that free time will dwindle as he gets a bit older, but I'm taking advantage of it while I still can!  My goal is to have enough SAGA armies to play a little rendition of 1066 at the end of this year. For that I need three armies: Normans, Anglo-Danes (Harold), and Vikings (Harald). I've got most of the Vikings I'll need, but I have to order some Norman bowmen/crossbowmen and Men At Arms. With my extra painting time I've hit my SAGA armies pretty hard, pumping out 17 Normans and 25 Vikings. I have a box of Anlgo-Saxons on the way, so that will be army number three once I get those done.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Battle of Hoth

By far the best scene in the Star Wars trilogy is the Battle of Hoth. I'd go so far as to say its one of the best battle sequences of all time, but I'm insanely bias. So when I saw this:



Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Storming Normans


So, I'm taking a break from Flames Of War for the moment, mainly because I don't really have the time to put into quality painting and article writing. The reason for that is quite amazing! My wife, Caroline, and I have received the best gift ever in our little Theodore David Allen Haught, born 2 April 2012. So between feeds (that word sounds so "Stargate Atlantis") and getting shot-gunned by thunder poops, I can only really concentrate on small painting projects. In steps SAGA!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Sudan Defense Force

Welcome back to the deep Sahara! I thought we'd take a plunge into a rather obscure unit in the raiders' war: the Sudan Defence Force. Coming off the bat from the Free French, the Sudan Defence Force (or SDF) is even more difficult to find information on. So I thought I'd compile some information here as well as quickly talk about how to field them in Flames of War.

Background
The SDF was formed in 1925. It was the Sudan's primary defence unit during the era. There is a lot of information and story leading up to 1925, and rather than cover all of that here, I recommend you have a quick google of the history of the Sudan. I assure you its all good stuff and pretty intriguing in its own right!
The Sudan itself was effectively divided into two sub-states, the Muslim north and the Christian south. To avoid religious problems, the British established the SDF based on regional boundries. This also helped foster a bit of comradeship between the troops since they were familiar with each other, spoke the same dialects, and held the same beliefs. 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Making Dust Clouds

Here's a simple How-To article on making Dust Clouds. Granted, its not much off the great tutorial in the back of Hellfire and Back!, but it might be helpful some how!

For BattleCry I decided that I needed a dust cloud for each vehicle in my force, which was 31. I hate odd numbers so I went with 32!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

BattleCry 2012

My Force
Well, got back from the big day! I was unable to play on Saturday, so a friend played the first three games and I played the last three games. It was an odd pairing, really, with Kyran's British Infantry Tanks (Matildas) and my LRDG Patrol. Kyran had a rough time of it on Saturday, scoring a total of 6 VP on the day and was at the bottom of the pack. So, I really couldn't do much worse. So out stepped the I-tanks and in came the trucks of the LRDG!

First a few photos of the event. BattleCry is a collection of many game systems and it was good to see such a variety. Sadly, I was too busy to take any photos other than some quick snaps from my game table!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

EWGT (BattleCry 2012 ) Prep

Well, the time is rapidly approaching for another Grand Tournament! This one is the Early War GT being held at the 2012 BattleCry convention. For more information on this event check out their site here: BattleCry ....

For this event I tossed around four lists to bring. The first, and perhaps most controversial, was one I made up on the fly for EW Americans based on the Carolina Maneuvers completed only a week before 7 December 1941. It included several M3 Lee tanks, five M3 Stuarts, and a "Rifle" Platoon of dismounted American tankers. As much as I'd love to field this, 2012 isn't the year for experimental stuff! My painting time is a premium these days so I needed to find something that didn't involve so much work.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Leclerc's Guns

Kufra, March 1941
Hello!
I know I said I was going to move on to another force, but I wanted to clear my painting table before starting anything new. I had an Tiralleurs Machine-gun platoon nearly finished, and those four trucks and inserts were just asking to be knocked out really quick. So, I spent the last few days of my holidays dusting off these platoons and getting ready for the next project. I've also included my Tiralleurs Artillery Battery, which I finished a while ago, but haven't posted up yet. So in going with this theme of gun teams, I thought I'd write up a little bit about the guns in Leclerc's column.

Leclerc left Chad to attack Kufra with few heavy weapons. This was mainly due to the fact that guns were difficult to transport across the Sahara, but also because the colonies of French Equitorial Africa were not terribly well supplied with military weapons when the war broke out. Like many colonies, the French troops in Chad had to fight a modern war with the previous era's weapons. Many of the weapons, such as the 8mm mle 1914 heavy machine-gun, were from the First World War, while others, such as the 75mm mle 1928 was a inter-war design. Basically, Leclerc had to deal with what he had and could not rely on more modern equipment.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Matford Madness! (Compagnie de Tirailleurs Seneglais, Part 2)

Welcome back for a new year! I'd like to thank all of you for stopping by, leaving comments, and following the blog. I greatly appreciate and look forward to your feedback. I'm looking forward to this year's articles. I've got a good feeling about them and I am really excited about getting nuts for raiding forces in the Sahara! I've got so much planned its unreal. Any way, lets get back to the Compagnie de Tirailleurs Seneglais.

As promised this article is going to be all about Leclerc's Matfords and modelling your Tirailleurs Seneglais platoons. I mentioned a previous article about Leclerc's trucks I had the following to say about modelling Matfords: