Monday, March 19, 2012

Albanich 2012 and Oriskany again.....

This week I was busy preparing the SESWC display game for Albanich the Wargames show in Dumfries on Saturday.  The display was my game of the Battle of Oriskany 1777, described in a previous blog, expanded to include the besiegers of Fort Stanwix.
Albanich is a small show but it definitely seemed busier this year than last year and that may well be due to it moving date from January to March.  It was a very pleasant drive down and the hills were looking great.

Our Oriskany display - with Betsy Ross flag
There was enough interest in the display to keep Hugh Wilson and I from actually playing it as a game so we just moved the relief column forward over the day.  Great to speak to so many people.  Lots of questions about our faux fur battle mat.  Having seen our one in use last year Dumfries Wargames club used a dyed version for their Roman Vs Dacians Hail Caesar display game.

Overall it was a good day - and our Oriskany game won the trophy for best display!

Oriskany - militia have crossed the creek
Here is the text of my handout for the display and more photos from the show.

Battle of Oriskany, August 6, 1777
This  28mm American War of Independence game is based on the Battle of Oriskany and is being played  using Black Powder Rules.

Some History
The Battle of Oriskany, fought on August 6, 1777, was one of the bloodiest battles in the North American theatre of the American Revolutionary War and a significant engagement of the Saratoga campaign.  Early in the siege of Fort Stanwix, an American relief force from the Mohawk Valley under Brigadier General Nicholas Herkimer, numbering around 800 men of the Tryon County militia and a party of Oneida Indians, approached in an attempt to raise the siege. The British commander Barry St. Leger authorized Sir John Johnson to intercept them with a force consisting of his own King's Royal Regiment of New York, a Hanau jäger detachment, Indian allies from the Six Nations and Indian Department Rangers totalling at least 450 men.
The Loyalist and Indian force ambushed Herkimer's force in a small valley about six miles (10 km) east of Fort Stanwix, near the present-day village of Oriskany, New York. During the battle, Herkimer was mortally wounded. The battle cost the Patriots approximately 450 casualties, while the Loyalists and Indians lost approximately 150 dead and wounded. The result of the battle remains partly ambiguous to this day because the advantage of the Loyalist victory was countered when a party sortied from Fort Stanwix and sacked their camp, purportedly spoiling morale among the Indians.  The battle is featured in the classic John Ford 1939 film Guns Along the Mowhawk but none of the action is shown.

The Setup
The game is fought down a 8ft by 6ft table.  The main action is the battle of the relief column with the fort and it’s besiegers being shown largely for effect.  We use the standard movement and ranges given in the rules.  The terrain is assumed to be wooded except for an area of open ground around two hamlets shown by the fences. The figure scale is approx 1 figure to 7 men.  To make them more effective I have allowed the Indians to charge any troops in the flank or rear and to charge any shaken formed troops frontally. In addition I have made  the American militia worse than they are in the BP rules.  I have made all the commanders 8s for this game as the Patriots are already handicapped by the their militia being Unreliable.

Mass Roman vs Dacian action - note the dyed faux fur terrain

VBCW action - cavalry charge super tank....
Sackville Street Dublin - the Irish Civil War game


  1. Nice game and a good report Bill.

    Well done to all involved.

    Sorry I couldn't make the show as I was abroad.


    1. Jim

      Rome in March sounds a better bet than Dumfries - even on a very good day....


  2. OK looks great and now a technical question
    Ok How do you get different pages for your blog I add them and only get same page and only a new list of posts any suggestions