Too Fat Lardies

Skirmish at Richneck Plantation

54142963_427930731082927_2688540757249228800_n

Thursday brought another game of Sharp Practice to the Williamsburg Legati.  Based on a minor event that occurred not far from here on the morning of January 1st, 1781.  Infamous traitor Benedict Arnold had invaded Virginia and was working out his advance upon the new capital at Richmond.

At 2 in the morning, Militia activity was spotted from the James River.  Arnold ordered Captain Johann Ewald of the Anspacher Hessian Jaegers to land with a detail of the Queen’s rangers to investigate.  After a brief assault, the militia were pushed back to a plantation in Warwick county.  There the militia attempted to have the advance of the Germans.

54728488_427930777749589_3874691895544250368_n

I ran the game as a meeting engagement, with the exception that I changed the victory conditions, only requiring the British to get across the table.  The original objectives would have actually been more historic but I was very concerned about the game balance.  I created the forces per the point system in the book, but looking at the forces on the table they certainly did not LOOK equal.   Furthermore, the Americans had the advantage of the plantation house in the corner and I imagined a long night of trying to expel militiamen from the house.   The Americans were defending with four groups of Militia in line and two militia skirmishers.  They were further supported by a musician, holy man, water cart and secondary deployment point.

DSC_1353

The Crown forces were two groups of Jaeger Skirmishers and 2 groups of Queen’s Ranger’s Skirmishers.  They also had a musician, spirits/ tinder box,  and a movable secondary deployment point.  The crown forces began with a force morale of 11 and the American’s a 10.

54519634_427930771082923_7473468782686502912_n

The Jaegers began the fight by coming through the woods off the Primary deployment point,  on the perimeter of the farm, but most of their forces deployed off of the secondary DP on the American’s Right.

53419756_427930734416260_86234250289872896_n

The American’s responded by sending their second formation of militia to protect that flank.  Unfortunately for the Ameircans, they had placed their secondary deployment forward of the primary Dp, which now left them deploying rather far from that flank.

DSC_1355

Luckily for the Americans, the Crown Forces stopped their forward movement and elected to take positions and fire upon the militia.

DSC_1356

This gave plenty of time for the second formation of militia to get into position and shake out into line.  They fired their one controlled volley into the forward group of Queen’s Rangers, killing almost all of them including their officer, and sending them into a rout.

DSC_1352

The British Force Morale started to drop dramatically but was still pretty firm.  Apparently, here the Crown forces remembered their objectives, and the began a race for the table edge, making great use of the Leaders Staus III level.

DSC_1354

Seeing that they were unlikely to stop this charge, the American’s ordered their own skirmishers to capture the Crown’s primary Deployment Point, hoping to cause a collapse of the British Morale, it was however too late.

 

In the end, the British made it off the corner of the board giving them victory.

In the end, I still feel the fight was unbalanced, and I am suspicious of the pointing system.  even with all the special abilities of these skirmish troops and the superiority of the Crown forces, it did not offset the advantages of line troops firing in formation, therefore I think the skirmish units too expensive.  If I were to do this again, I think I would give Queen’s Rangers in line.

Cheers,

Ron

 

Advertisements
Categories: American Revolution, Charlie Foxtrot Models, Sharp Practice, Too Fat Lardies, Williamsburg Legati | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Hood’s Battery

I have been working with an idea for a “Pint Sized” campaign for the Too Fat Lardies game Sharp Practice for some time. Last night I ran what would be the first scenario for my club, The Williamsburg Legati.

52914622_423846818157985_5746930090478927872_n

This campaign centers upon the action of Benedict Arnold leading an army of mostly loyalist forces in my area of Virginia at the beginning of 1781.  Not completely trusted by Clinton yet, the former American hero was sent to Williamsburg to build a defensible port for British efforts to deny efforts to support General Green in the Carolinas, as well as to disrupt lines of supply and destroy stores of war material.

His ships were spotted coming into the area and the word was sent to Governor Jefferson, who feared that they might really be French Allies decided to do nothing until their identity was confirmed.

Arnold brought with him the Hessian and Anspach foot  Jagers sptsin Ewald, The 80th Regiment, under the Command of Lt Col Dundas,  The Queen’s Rangers commanded by Lt Simcoe, Robinson’s Corps (Loyal American Regiment) commanded by Major Robinson,  The Althause Sharpshooters (Company of York Volunteers), A Company of Royal Artillery and 100 Pioneers.

ewald2

A real advantage to playing this campaign is that two of the commanders wrote memoirs that survive.  Captain Ewald, who had command of Hessian Jaegers, and Lt Colonel Simcoe of the Queen’s Rangers. Ewals also made a number of maps which decorate this post.

After landing at Portsmouth, Arnold quickly sailed up the James towards the New Virginia Capital at Richmond. After a failed attempt to land near Jamestown, Arnold continued to sail westward. Where he encountered Hood’s battery.

Hoods Point

Artillery had been placed upon the bluff to stop British vessels from sailing up the river to bombard Richmond.  Arnold needed to remove this battery.  Ewald Jaegers and either the Grenadiers and the Light of the 80th or the Queens Rangers, depending upon which memoir you believe, landed at Wards Creek where the ships are shown on the map above.  From here about a mile from the battery, they marched around the flank to attack the unprotected rear.  The Americans, having spotted the landing boats, fled, leaving the guns to the mercy of the enemy.

This does not a good wargame make.  For this campaign I have decided to propose a “what if” aspect.  The fictio0n of this campaign, is that Jefferson responds by ordering reinforcements be raised, and for some of the Virginia State Line, being raised and trained by Baron Von Steuben to be sent to the Carolinas, be diverted to face a new threat.

52974577_423846881491312_2081818958163345408_n

The Americans were defending the battery with two groups of Militia as well as to groups of these Virginia State line.  They also had two groups of militia skirmishers.  for support, they chose an explorer scout and a marksman specialist.

52932104_423846868157980_6048230017752629248_n

The British were mostly Queen’s Rangers.  Two groups of line and two groups of Skirmishers.  Ewald was represented by a group of Jaeger skirmishers which they choose to further support by spending their points an a second.

53060118_423846768157990_7920806819318988800_n

Early on, the Americans took a strong flank position with their militia skirmishers, much to the chagrin of a local farmwife.  They also dispatched some of their line militia to try to figure out how to turn and load some of the guns.

52914622_423846818157985_5746930090478927872_n

The Hessians also had flanks on their mind, and they used their rifles to good effect, safely outside their opponent’s musket range.

53040342_423846908157976_2818232551791919104_n

Here things got difficult for the British.  Although inexperienced as artillerymen, the militia at the guns, aided by the withering fire of their comrades still in line,  had a devastating effect on the main body of the Queen’s Rangers, The slowly fell back and eventually one group broke.  That combined with a lack of red cards left the British forces frozen in the field and exposed.

In the end, everyone had a good time, but those guns were an issue.  Now that I look at Ewals map, I think I will leave the actual battery of the table, and center the fight on the redoubt instead.

until next time, Cheers,

Ron

 

Categories: American Revolution, Sharp Practice, Too Fat Lardies, Wargaming, Williamsburg Legati | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Hell and Heroism at Hannut, by way of Historicon 2018

DSC_1214 (2)

Today brought the end of the 2018 Historicon up in Lancaster, PA.  As Lard America was participating with a Lard day, with guest of honor and Lard Meister Richard Clarke himself attending OI though perhaps I had better go.  Glad I did.

I decided to put on  Hell and Heroism at Hannut by Ben Fiene.  This was a three scenario mini campaign printed in the Too Fat Lardies Christmas Special from 2013.  These are three linked by theme only scenarios depicting some of the action at Hannut.  It also is rather atypical of Chain of Command.

Chaos and Confusion.jpg

Enter a caption

The first scenario Chaos and Confusion, has an interesting beginning set up.  Basically it is May 11th 1940.  A recon platoon of  of 3e DLM is ordered forward to probe the area around the Albert Canal.  Unbeknownst to the French the canal was already seized by the Germans about 24 hours previously.  The platoon’s commander,  Sous Lieutenant de Vasselot dismounts from his Panhard to speak with a Belgian officer.  As he approached he realized the uniform is wrong, this is the enemy!  They both go for their sidearms but the French man is a little faster and the Hun falls.

So begins the battle.  The French have three Panhards and a squad of motorcycles, the third panhard and the motorcycles are detached and will arrive later.  The French , must hold the ground waiting for the missing armored car to return and then they must report back by exiting from the side they entered on.

The Germans  have a Panzer Grenadier platoon but their Commanding officer begins the game dead.   To represent their confusion over this misshap, they not only are limited to one Senior Leader but they also are operating on only 4 command dice.  Their orders are to stop the French from reporting back.

This is clearly a hard task for the Germans as most of their weapons will do little against the Panhards.  Playtesting by Matthew Mattic on Facebook caused him to suggest the addition of a PAK 36 and requiring that the French were at force morale 4 or higher when exiting to win.  This advice was heeded.

DSC_1215

Germans maneuvering through the orchard

Turned out the Anti Tank Gun did little.  The village on the French side of the table provided sufficient cover, blocking the gun’s line of sight.  Shots were exchanged on both sides but casualties were light.

DSC_1219

Panhards Holding the Crossroads

 

DSC_1222

Germans reach the Outskirts of the Village

DSC_1223

Enter a caption

When the missing French detachment arrived this would change.  The Panhards were immune to most of the German fire power, but the poor motorcyclists were not.  Heavy fire was thrown on them, disrupting their cohesion, routing one of the bikes and causing another to dismount.  The French took some hits to their Force Morale, but it was to late.  They got a double phase not far from tables edge and made good their escape.  The French had one, but it was close.

Hannut 2.jpg

Enter a caption

The next scenario was Den Ganzen Lieban  Langen Tag.  A scenario designed around the fighting at Crehen.  The scenario’s name comes from a quote of Panzer Captain Von Jugenfeld who said the fighting continued all the love longed day.

DSC_1227

Crehen

This was a far more typical Chain of Command game with two platoons fighting for possession of Crehen. The French were aided by two Hotchkiss H30s (one with an upgraded long SA 38) two Belgians gates and one minefield. The Germans had a Panzer Grenedier platoon with 6 command dice supported by two panzer IIs, a Panzer III, a pregame barrage and a mine clearing team.

DSC_1228

This looked rough for the Germans.  Most of the village is well over on the French side of the table.   There was also a series of walls and stone structures forming a formidable looking barriers across the field.  The French placed the Belgian Gate and the mine fields in the most prominent gaps.  The Germans however were far more aggressive than the French in the patrol phase and managed to get jump of marker very far forward, allowing them to take some of the buildings easier than might have been imagined.

DSC_1232

Firefight

One of these positions was a house just across the road from the petrol station and a fierce firefight began.  The Germans never really committed their rifles to this action, but the MG 34s were doing fine as it was.

DSC_1231

On the German’s left, they sent their two Panzer IIs to rip into the other primary French position, again to very good effect.

DSC_1229

Enter a caption

The French responded by dividing their Hotchkiss tanks.  sending one forward to support the firefight at the Shell, and the other to deal with the Panzer IIs.  Another squad was also ordered into the Petrol station to support that first squad which had taken heavy casualties this was a huge error.  As the darted across the street, the Germans played their Chain of Command dice and interrupted the action, catching that squad flat footed in the road at close range.  The were ripped apart.  In two phases, the French Force Morale crashed from an already unsteady 5 to 0 and the Germans took the town.

Hannut 3.jpg

Enter a caption

The last  scenario deals with the crazy actions of Lieutenant Le Bel, who on the 13th of May would drive his Hotchkiss through the German lines surrounding Jauche not once, but THREE times.

This scenario is problematic.  The idea sounds  kind of fun, at Le Bell’s story is great.  as written however, the French are only required to drive two Hotchkiss tanks across the board.  Now that might not sound so tough but all the German’s have to stop them is part of a Panzer Grenadier platoon, a Panzer I, a Panzer II and a PAK 36.  The only weapons really likely to do anything to a Hotchkiss is the possibly the PAK 36 and to a lesser degree the Panzer II and the platoons Anti Tank Rifle.  I decided to give them a panzerknacker team as well.  Little damage was done to the French tanks, though there was some success in slowing their progress.

The Panzer I was mostly useless.  Or so I thought.  In the end, with the Hotchkiss tanks a good deal of the way to their objective, the obsolete little German tank raced forward and rammed one of the French vehicles.  I didn’t even know their were rules for this in Chain of Command.  The Panzer suffered more from the crash than did the Hotchkiss, as one might imagine, but in a ram the victor still rolls on the plus 2 net hit chart and the result was an immobilized Tank.  As the victory conditions called for both tanks to make it this gave the German’s the victory!

DSC_1236

Enter a caption

Every one seemed to have a good time and the majority of my players were in all three games!  Thanks for playing and thanks to Lard America for this little taste of Yankee Lard.

Until next time, Cheers!

 

Categories: Chain of Command, Convention, Fall of France, Historicon, Lard America, Too Fat Lardies | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

What a Tanker at the Club

Tonight we tried The Too Fat Lardies newest game, WHAT A TANKER. What a Tanker is a fun, quick paced game of tank to tank combat in World War Two. It is designed for any models ranging from 10mm up to 1:48, which was the scale we chose. We had five players, and after far too […]

via What A Tanker! — Williamsburg Legati

Categories: Too Fat Lardies, Wargaming, What a Tanker, Williamsburg Legati, World War II | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

The British Advance

Due to the various demands of the Holiday season, and a housing emergency, Dave Wilson and I found ourselves as the only members of the Williamsburg Legati meeting a couple of weeks ago.  We took the opportunity to play a game of Chain of Command.

033

I set up a table imagining that the battle was somewhere around the area of British Paratrooper activity at Normandy.  Mostly because I am preparing to run the Von Luck Pint Sized Campaign by Too Fat Lardies.  We rolled randomly for scenario and got Scenario Number Five: the Flank Attack.

Dave was attacking with the Paratroopers and I was holding the farm at the upper right corner.  This scenario give the attacker the ability to bring his patrol markers from two different sides at the same time.  Very disconcerting if you are the defender.  I tried to do too much with mine, trying to defend both fronts and soon found that I could hardly maneuver them.  I have often said that Chain of Command can be won or lost in the patrol pase.  In this game I lost that very way.  In fact Dave could have wrapped around me even, so badly had I played my patrols, but he elected that in light have having an enjoyable game he would not.  Thanks Dave.

034

Dave’s Paras started advancing on the farmhouse just down the road from mine and was first to notice that the layout of the buildings left most of their windows facing away form the action.  Only the house in the middle of the board really had a useful vantage point, and it was right alongside of one of Dave’s jump off markers.  The Section shown above made little progress up the table.

035

The Germans had the same problem however so most of my deployments were into the cover of the hedges.  My jump off markers were also all cramped together, all three being in the area of this one photo!  Also visible in this shot just under the tree is my poorly chosen support option.  The PAK 38 is aimed at the only useful house on the board, which was the center of much of the Para Activity.   I chose the PAK 38 because I like the model and don’t usually even remember to bring it, but in this case I knew I wasn’t going to be opposed by any armor.  If I knew the German equipment better I would have brought the ie IG 38 infantry gun.  This model doesn’t get used much either, costs less support points and would have been far more useful in taking out troops concealed in stone houses.

037

Surprisingly, I took few pics of the British forces.  Dave started to bring forces on to my right, trying to flank me so I ordered a section to secure the stone barn across the street from my position.  This was a good idea, but I did it too late.   Further more, when they started to receive fire from the enemy I pulled them back.  This was a fatal error.  I did have to go into the open to get around to the entrance of the barn, and do so under fire.  I don’t doubt that I would have received some fire, but had I laid down covering fire with the MG42 and taken the risk I suspect I would have survived most of it.  Instead I got shot down in the street.  Punished for my indecision and lack of aggressiveness.

036

Meanwhile my first section and ATG were taking so0me serious cross fire, and doing very little damage in return.  I eventually had to pull the ATG back while the crew recovered their bottle.

039

Part of why I had to withdraw the PAK 38 were the two snipers the Para had deployed.  We haven’t used snipers much, due to some disappointment with them early on, but the PARA platoon fields two normally.  In this occasion they were very useful.

In the end we had to call the game because it had got quite late.  My force was still in pretty good shape but I had squandered so many opportunities early on and by not being more aggressive when I should have I allowed myself to get boxed into my corner.  I hope I have learned my lesson.

 

Until next time, cheers,

Ron

 

 

 

Categories: Chain of Command, Charlie Foxtrot Models, Too Fat Lardies, Wargaming, Williamsburg Legati, World War II | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.

7TV: PULP

Designing a wargame in the world of the pulp serials

Combined Arms Podcast

Wargaming Over the Hills and Far Away

The Renaissance Troll

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

Skirmish Supremacy Blog

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

Miniature Soldiers & Stuff

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

Singled Out - A Guild Ball Podcast

Mob Football in the Free Cities

Blogorovka

My attempt to chronicle the largest toy tank battles in the history of manchildren.

JOHN BOND's WARGAMING STUFF

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

Gentlemanly Wargaming

A blog about playing games with toy soldiers (formerly called El Granadero Loco)

Meeples & Miniatures

The longest running UK tabletop gaming podcast

The Immortal Jukebox

A Blog about Music and Popular Culture

"Fishy Fashion and Maritime Modes"

Seafaring Dress in the European Age of Sail (1750-1800)

The Crossroads Dispatches

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

LEGIO XXVIII LILIPVTIA

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

Earl the Bard

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

A Damsel in This Dress

My life in stitches - adventures in the world of costuming...

Past Pleasures

Wargaming in Williamsbrg, ,Virginia

Compleat Napoleonics

My gaming group's re-fight of 1792-1815.

ubiquematt

This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas