Thursday, 24 November 2016

15mm Guadalcanal Battle

On Wednesday night I went over to a friends place to play a game of "Conflict of Heroes" - basically a board game - which we have played a couple of times previously - but this time converted to a table top game with 15mm figures

The scenario was based on the following real life action - details copied form Wikipedia:

"Meanwhile, native island scouts—directed by British government official and officer in the British Solomon Islands Protectorate Defence Force, Martin Clemens—told the Marines of Japanese troops at Taivu, near the village of Tasimboko, about 17 mi (27 km) east of Lunga. Edson launched a raid against the Japanese troops at Taivu. Destroyer transports USS McKean and Manley and two patrol boats took 813 of Edson's men to Taivu in two trips. Edson and his first wave of 501 troops landed at Taivu at 05:20 (local time) on 8 September. Supported by aircraft from Henderson Field and gunfire from the destroyer transports, Edson's men advanced towards Tasimboko village but were slowed by Japanese resistance. At 11:00, the rest of Edson's men landed. With this reinforcement and more support from the Henderson Field aircraft, Edson's force pushed into the village. The Japanese defenders, believing a major landing was underway after observing the concurrent approach of an Allied supply ship convoy heading towards Lunga Point, retreated into the jungle, leaving behind 27 dead. Two Marines were killed.
In Tasimboko, Edson's troops discovered the supply base for Kawaguchi's forces, including large stockpiles of food, ammunition and medical supplies, and a shortwave radio. The Marines seized documents, equipment and food supplies, destroyed the rest, and returned to the Lunga perimeter at 17:30. The quantities of supplies and intelligence from the captured documents revealed that at least 3,000 Japanese troops were on the island and apparently planning an attack."

This is a map of the action from the web

Above is the scenario page from the game - the Japanese started off with four units - an infantry unit, an MMG, a mountain gun and a sniper. As the game progressed, on move 2, 3, 4 and 5, they would receive an additional two infantry units per move as reinforcements.

The USMC started with more units and received 3 or 4 extra Para Marine units at the start of move 3. The US also had air support available but it could only be used on Japanese units NOT in any jungle area

The game was played on a 6' by 4' table marked with hexes, to replicate the board game. Figures are Flames of War (US) and Command Decision (Japs)

View down the length of the table from the end where the US deployed - the village of Tasimboko can be seen in the distance

Above and below two views of Tasimboko before the game commenced

Early in move 2 and the first of the Japanese reinforcements arrive

USMC advancing through Kuni grass, which did not block line of site OR give any cover, but DID impede movement somewhat. Only one unit of the original two remain as they were engaged in the flank by a concealed Japanese sniper and wiped out

USMC Para Marine reinforcements advancing towards Tasimboko village on move 3
The deadly Japanese sniper takes aim again

USMC advancing on their right flank after the left flank advance stalled under the sniper fire that eliminated two of three units.

Move 3 and two more Japanese reinforcements arrive

USMC advance to very close range of the MMG concealed in one of the buildings

The USMC advance continues despite suffering heavy casualties on their left flank

US air support engages the MMG in the house but to no effect - earlier, the USAAF had successfully destroyed one Japanese unit caught in the open.

Move 4 - multiple Japanese reinforcements have arrived and made their way through the jungle to the edge of the village

The final situation at the end of move 5 - which was the allotted time for the game. The Japanese managed to rewrite history - they only lost one unit to the early air strike and killed 4 or 5 US units, preventing the US forces from even reaching the village, let alone capturing it and destroying the supplies, as happened in real life

Final view of the heroic Japanese sniper who managed to remain concealed throughout the game and accounted for two or possibly three of the US casualties

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

WW1 in East Africa - Indian Army Unit

Here is the second unit of Old Glory Indians painted and based for action in East Africa 1914-1918.

Four bases per unit - the units are either Platoons, Companies or Battalions, depending on the scale of the engagement - but we expect most of the actions to be smaller scale so generally these four elements will represent a platoon.

Info on regimental distinctions is a bit on the short side for this period so I have taken some poetic license and assumed a rifle unit might have green involved - so these guys are officially Kashmir Rifles!

The full four element unit of 12 figures

Closer view of two elements including the British officer

The other two elements including a native officer

The first two elements from different angle

And the second two again from a different angle

No painting tomorrow as I will be at a mates house for the first game since our week long gaming fest at Lake Tarawera - 15mm Pacific War so my Japanese Command Decision collection will be getting an outing - will take some pics and post a match report here in a day or two........

Monday, 14 November 2016


The last week or so has been spent painting the 20 hard plastic Frostgrave figures, complete with female heads.

To be honest, I found them quite hard to do - believe it or not, there was just TOO MUCH detail on some of them, too many different pieces of clothing etc and I struggled to come up with believable colour schemes for them.

I had started off thinking I would keep them quite drab - all browns and greys, subdued, Medieval type colours - but having got half way through painting the first ten I thought they looked awful, so I a change of heart!

Anyway, here they are - I am not as pleased with them as some others, but as any wargamer will know, the standard of painting has NO effect on how the figures perform on the table top!

I have created two bands of ten figures each - with two "similar" figures in each band - here is the leader (with torch) and two other figures from the first band

Band one swordswoman, double handed weapon and club/mace

Crossbow and archer

The last three members of the first war band

Leader (with lantern) and first two members of the second war band

Axewonan, double handed weapon and club/mace
The archer and crossbow

Last three figures - the one on the left is a duplicate so I obviously made some mistake in taking the pics! And now I review it - the right hand is a double up too....

Random close up of the pole armed warrior

Leader of war band one

Leader of war band two

The two figures armed with both sword and dagger

Not only did I have trouble painting these, now I have had a challenge in producing adequate images of them - I have taken about 30+pictures of these ladies but deleted two thirds of them...AARRGGHH!

I think I will try WW1 in East Africa after this!

Sunday, 6 November 2016

WW1 in East Africa Update

I dragged out the British figures I currently have available for this period. The NW Frontier/Boer War Old Glory Brits can' be used because they have the wrong type of sun helmet but as stated previously,  I think the Indians are ok. Unfortunately we will be using a different basing convention, so my Colonial collection on 40mm x 40mm bases and comprising 5 elements per unit wont be any use.....SIGH!

I have about 12 or 14 elements of Kings African Rifles like these - figures by Brigade Games

The command element

Three KAR Askaris

The other three Askaris - really nice figures and great to paint as all the detail really stands out

A WW1 vintage armoured car - resin and metal kit from Old Glory

Mounted S African cavalry  (Boer War mounted infantry by Old Glory)

Indian infantry with British officer by Old Glory

Our WW1 in East Africa Project

This was first mooted a couple of years back but in the coming 12 months there has been a full commitment to make this happen for the next Tarawera trip - two of the group are doing a scenario and we have already been issued with OrBats etc.

I already have a few figures for this period, both Brigade Games and Old Glory, and also purchased the Osprey book on this period about 18 months ago (see below)

The cover of the book

German Sailors

German Askaris

British and native allies

British, Indian and African troops

S African uniforms

Indians and Askaris

Belgian European and Askari troops

Portuguese soldiers in Mozambique

Below are a few reprints of my existing figures for this era - I also have about 40 Kings African Rifles (KAR) by Brigade Games

German officer with Askari NCO and rifleman

Two more German Schutztruppe officers

A third German command element - have no actual troops for them to lead yet though!

A British HMG team

German Askari HMG team

British Sikh HMG team - all the preceding figures are by Brigade Games

Command element of dismounted Indian cavalry - Old Glory figures

Dismounted S African cavalry - Old Glory figures

The full unit of dismounted Indian cavalry

Old Glory Sikhs - I think they should be useable as the uniforms and equipment don't look like they changed much since the 1890's

Wont use the semaphore but the Indian mountain guns should also be fine

Bengal Lancers

Mounted version of the dismounted Indian cavalry a few pics above - all the latter figures are by Old Glory

So now I have to get a few more Brits, some German askaris and possibly some Belgians too - juts as well I have 1-12 months to get through this! In the meantime, I have a couple of units of Indian OG figures I can paint and base for this period - again, they are actually NW Frontier but I don't think anything had changed dramatically in the intervening 20 odd years. I also have a little side project to work on as below............................................................................

I bought this pack of twenty hard plastic multipart figures from Annie, the Dice Bag Lady, for £20, and combined it with 20 x 28mm female heads by Statuesque - giving me enough figures for 2 x 10 all female war bands - now I just have to try and do justice to the excellent figures with my average painting skills!

The first ten figures undercoated in white and with a brown wash over them - not my usual method so hope it works out.....

Two close up shots of some of the "troops"