Tuesday, June 20, 2017


I was away at the weekend at Kirriemuir in Angus for an American Civil War event.  Over the two days 12 gamers attended from the LOGW.  The impressive figures were supplied by various members of the group.
Short range naval action

The land campaign was developed by Kevin Calder and Peter Nicholson and the rules used were Kevin Calder’s quick play ACW rules. The table was over 24ft long and stretched from Washington to Richmond.  The game involved trains and cavalry raids with each player commanding an infantry division.  The first days gaming was a  series of successes for the Union driving back the Confederates into Virginia.  On the 2nd day the Union ran out of luck and initiative so their advance was held and eventually driven back by the Confederates.  On the last turn of the game Washington fell to a flanking Rebel division under Charlie Grant but at the same time his dad Charles Grant captured Richmond.  So the campaign was agreed to be a draw.
A desperate melee

Union cavalry raid

Peter Nicholson and I supplied the 28mm ships for the naval side game.  I worked up the scenario for this and we used my Big Ship Ironclad rules.  The naval game was played twice.  The union ships heavy guns did not prove effective and both were Confederate victories.

It was a very enjoyable weekend.  We will be back in November for an Italian Wars game.

Here is a link to all my fotos on Flickr

Union unit retiring

My Dictator in action at last

Charlottesville  burns - Union atrocity

Richmond falls to the Union and is set aflame

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


On Saturday John Perkin and I went to Methil in Fife where some members of our AB1 group were testing out new facilities for our big six monthly games.  The game the group staged was a fictional Seven Years War game – the Action at Fictionburg – using Black Powder.  The terrain was provided by Dave Imrie and the players brought along their own toys.

View from Schloss Fictionburg before the armies deploy
We had six players – the allied Prussian and British forces were commanded by Jack Glanville, Chris stone and Ken Pearce whilst the allied French, Austrian, Russian and German states troops were commanded by John Perkin, Dave Imrie and myself.  The battle took place on the river plain below the mighty Schloss Fictionburg.  The other commanders started with 2 brigades on the table with a further brigade in reserve.  I held back a 2nd brigade to see how the game developed.  Generally all the forces advanced to meet their opponents whilst my first German states brigade stood on the defensive on our right wing.

Troops deployed - Chris's Prussians await to cross the Fictionburg stream
Things went well for us at the start and by lunchtime John’s French on our left wing had pummelled Jacks Prussian infantry.  On our right my initial infantry and artillery decisively shot Ken’s British infantry (good shots) to pieces.  Our centre under Dave was under heavy attack by the massed cavalry of Chris and Ken.  It looked like it would be our victory. 

British cavalry charge an Austrian line

Sadly it all changed after lunch.  On our left John’s French lost all their cavalry to the 2 brigades of Prussian cavalry and his flank infantry brigade was forced to withdraw.  I lost 2 battalions to the fire of Ken’s 2nd Brigade.  In the centre Dave’s Austrian infantry were forced back by the enemy cavalry charges but the situation was stabilised by the gallant efforts of the Russian cavalry brigade.  They were outnumbered by the heavier Prussian and British horse but held them of with both sides having to withdraw shaken to reorganise.  At the end the game was judged to be a draw with both sides losing 10 battalions/regiments and 2 guns.

Action on flank - my troops in firefight with the British - my gun proved decisive
It was a fun, exciting game that could have gone either way fought on wonderful looking terrain.  Here is a link to all my photos on Flickr:

Situation early afternoon

Prussian dragoons crash into an Austrian line

End situation on our left flank - French infantry making fighting withdrawal in front of advancing Prussians

Anglo-Prussian command - Jack, Chris, Ken - pondering how they managed to draw!

Thursday, June 8, 2017


This Tuesday I was at the SESWC in Edinburgh.  I have been working on a big ship version of my ACW naval rules and this meeting gave me a chance to test them out.  It finally gave me a chance to get most of my 28mm ships onto the table.

Onondaga under ineffective Confederate fire

Tuscaloosa and Mississippi concentrate against the Onondaga

The scenario was a raid by Union forces to disrupt the Confederates effort to complete the conversion of a river steamer into an armed ram.  The Union had 2 monitors the Montauk and the twin turret Onondaga.  To oppose the attack the confederates had a small ironclad ram the Tuscaloosa and a large centre wheel ironclad ram the Mississippi plus a shore battery of 2 medium smoothbores.  The table was 8ft by 6ft and to give an impression of the scale of the ships the Onondaga is 24 inches long.  The ships were all made by PMC.

The Confederates ironclads sortied to meet the approaching monitors.  Things quickly went badly for them as the Tuscaloosa was rammed by the Onondaga and then smashed by the heavy guns of both the monitors.  She lost all her flotation points, struck her colours and being holed by the ram sank.  The Union ships then battered the Mississippi which lost 2 guns, had her steering jammed to starboard and was set on fire.  She failed a morale test and had to break of the action.  She could not repair her steering so instead of steaming for safety she turned around the Union monitors and ran aground.  Her crew promptly abandoned ship.  The Confederate shore battery proved particularly ineffective scoring only one hit which bounced of the Mondauk.  The incomplete ram finally got underway but hit by multiple heavy shots she struck her colours.  It was a Union whitewash.

It was a fun game – the rules played well.  I made a few improvements to the rules after I got home.  I am trying out the rules in another 2 weeks at an ACW weekend.  My thanks to Angus, Campbell and Michel helping with the playtesting.  Angus has written a detailed action account on his blog at


Onondaga rams the Tuscaloosa

Tuscaloosa sinks - Captain is last man aboard

Sternwheeler has struck her colours to the Montauk

Confederate shore battery - truly hopeless gunners