Monday, 26 July 2021

Latest GNW Unit Completed

 After a burst of activity over the weekend, the third of five Ebor cavalry units now joins the army of King Charles XII. I have already mentioned all the information I have about this regiment, so here are the images. Next up, I am doing the three gun crews, which should not take too long as it does not involve horses in any way, shape or form!

The entire unit of Bohusland Dragoons

Flashback to stage three of the painting process - horses complete and riders half done

The second squadron in all their glory

Obligatory overhead shot to show the V shape formation

A range of close ups of the latest two stands ....

Thats it for tonight - stay safe everyone and I hope you are enjoying great gaming wherever you are.

Saturday, 24 July 2021

Moaning Old Git.......

I have decided to do a post whinging about how overseas retailors determine the postage they will charge we benighted colonials, as there seems to be no rhyme or reason to it.

I have recently made a number of different purchases, none of them huge, and have found the postage rates charged vary greatly, as per below:

Victoria Miniatures US – Heads at cost of $US8 – postage $US10 

Col Bills UK Various figures at cost of £45 - postage £12.60 

Brigade Game US Various figures at cost of $136.50 - postage $18.55 (special deal if you buy over $125 worth of figures)

Anvil UK heads at cost of £3.50 each set - min postage £10 

Statuesque Miniatures - heads at cost of £4.60 per set - min postage £4.85

Caliver UK - about £35 worth - post FREE!

So the main issue I had was with the minimum £10 Anvil had on their checkout - I would probably have only bought one set of their heads at £3.50, but I refuse to pay more for the postage than the product costs, so bought three sets! (I had this issue with Wee Wolf in the US recently - I wanted to get three mounted figures in total at $25 I think - and the minimum postage was around the same - making them very expensive figures which I did not purchase)

I understand international shipping costs something and I also realise the USPS rates have increased significantly since the US strong armed the international postal union but lets be honest, 8 or 10 28mm heads in resin could be placed in bubble wrap and sent in an ordinary A4 envelope for a fraction of the cost of most of these.

OK moan over!

The more astute of you may have realised the reason for the subject of this post is that I have made little progress on the second batch of Swedish dragoons. With this unit, I have taken some advice from my gaming friend Andrew and painted the horses first - but it does not seem to have speeded things up noticeably! I took a couple of images to show progress - with the first six, I undercoated the horse and rider separately, painted the horse, then attached the rider and painted him in situ. This time, I attached the rider then undercoated both and am now painting the horse before starting on the rider. I am not sure which method is better - how do others paint their mounted troops?

The first coat 

Dry brushed highlights and saddle clothes added

Just to show we do not have permanent sunshine her in Auckland, these are views through my windscreen on the drive home a couple of nights ago - it was absolutely torrential rain!

The final image below I took during "rush hour" when we were at our Level Three lockdown back in May 2020 - showing how few cars were on the road - my usual hour plus journey home took around thirty minutes!

Tuesday, 20 July 2021

GNW Cavalry - Bohusland Dragoons - First Squadron

Here are the first six figures of the green coated Bohusland Dragoon Regiment of Charles 12th's Swedish army. Chosen for their unique uniform (it seems they spent the entire war stationed in Sweden, so would not have done a lot of fighting against the Saxons or Russians, presumably, but we wont let that small details prevent us from fielding such a stylishly attired unit! The three command figures are again spread over these two bases and also chevroned in a V shape formation.

I think these have come out nicely and am looking forward to getting the other six painted up.

Sunday, 18 July 2021

GNW Swedish Cavalry Pommerska Completed

After what seems a VERY long time, I finally finished my second twelve figure unit of Ebor Swedish cavalry.

The entire unit 

This is how the latest squadron is based in the v shaped formation

And this is how the two squadrons go together when in a line - I think it works quite well

Next up is a rather unique unit - the Bohusland dragoon Regiment - sporting a green coat faced in yellow

I have already completed the first three figures and will get to work shortly on another three, so hopefully the first squadron should be ready for a show and tell in a few days!

Friday, 16 July 2021

For King and Parliament - The Battle of Aberdeen 1644

 Thursday game this week at Julian's - Chris, John and I joined our host as we pitted my Covenanters (finally representing...well...Covenanters!) against Julian's TYW Swedes, representing Montrose's Royalists. The scenario chosen by Julian was the battle of Aberdeen, 13 September 1644.

A brief overview of the historical battle:

The Battle of Aberdeen


The Covenanter government of Scotland had entered into alliance with the English

parliament and had entered the war in England in early 1644, the Scottish army having a

significant impact in the campaign for the north of England. In response, following the

royalists’ dramatic defeat at Marston Moor (Yorkshire, July 1644), the King appointed the

Marquis of Montrose as his military commander in Scotland. On 28th August 1644

Montrose raised the royal standard and with little more than 2000 troops fought a campaign

in which he had won a series of dramatic successes in the Highlands against the Covenanter


Montrose began a campaign intended to present such a threat to the Covenanter

government that they would have to recall Leven’s army from England and thus swing the

balance of the war there back in the royalist favour. In Scotland he might even, in the long

run, manage to topple the government and install a regime favourable to the king.

Montrose’s first objective was to establish a secure territorial base upon which he could

sustain a long campaign. Though outnumbered, his forces achieved their first victory at

Tippermuir. This forced the Scottish government to recall some, but not the bulk, of the army from

England, and other troops from Ireland.

From Tippermuir the royalists marched east towards Dundee. There they were rebuffed and

so pressed on northwards towards the government controlled city of Aberdeen. 


Various local forces had been called to Aberdeen in early September to counter the threat

from Montrose. Though not all turned out, the government army was substantially stronger

than the royalists. They held the Bridge of Dee, forcing Montrose on the 11th September to

ford the river near the Mills of Drum. First, he called the government forces to surrender

but they would not. Instead, they deployed south west of the city, in a strong location

adjacent to Justice Mills. The troops deployed astride the main road (the Hard Gate)

approaching from the south west along the top of a steep scarp overlooking the point at

which the main road crossed the How Burn or Justice Mills Burn.

The government deployment is not clear from the documentary sources but Raid

suggests Balfour deployed the bulk of his cavalry on the left flank where the scarp was far

less steep, with the remainder on the right flank, adjacent to Justice Mills, with musketeers

holding the Justice Mills itself. They also placed several light artillery pieces in front of

the infantry and held several buildings and walled yards on the sloping ground. The royalist deployed to the west of the burn with infantry in the centre and cavalry on the wings, each

supported by about 100 musketeers. A few light artillery pieces were placed to the fore.

After an artillery exchange the government cavalry made ineffective, poorly coordinated

attacks on either flank. An outflanking infantry move by the covenanters, via a sunken lane,

on the royalist left was effectively countered. The well drilled royalist infantry used good

tactics to defeat the right wing covenanter cavalry attack. In the centre the royalist infantry

attack now cleared the buildings held against them and after a hard fight for some time,

they followed up the firefight with a charge that in hand to hand fighting soon broke the

inexperienced Covenanter infantry in the centre. The Covenanter reserve was also then

broken. In all the action had lasted less than two hours .

While the covenanter cavalry escaped, in the rout a significant number from the broken

infantry regiments were killed. There was then extensive plundering and far worse

atrocities by the royalist troops in the town itself.

But the royalist forces soon had to retreat north westward towards the Highlands because

the Marquis of Argyll with substantial forces was advancing to counter the royalist threat.



The royalist army under Montrose comprised mainly Irish troops for following Tippermuir

many of the Highland forces had dispersed. But they were more experienced and under a

very capable commander. The Covenanters under Lord Balfour, who had limited

experience, combined two regiments of regular troops with a substantial number of local

levies, the latter lacking battle experience.

Royalist:  1500 foot; 70 horse; several light artillery


Covenanter: 2000 foot and about 500 horse; several light artillery pieces


There is limited evidence of the losses both on the battlefield and in the town but Marren

suggests that the losses on the covenanter side tend to be over emphasised while the royalist

losses are under played 

The Battle of Aberdeen scenario

The battle map accompanying the previous description

One of the Covenanters two guns - a venerable old piece by Front Rank, painted twenty five years ago

Covenant Infantry - these are Warlord plastics

And their opposition

General view of the battlefield from both table ends  Covenant on left above....and right below

The Covenant right flank cavalry advance - note, the actual waterway would not have been this significant, being merely a stream

Covenanter infantry - Renegade and Bicorn figures

The first charge - Covenant cavalry on the right flank cross the burn (stream) and charge a pike block. Surprisingly, this should have succeeded. Julian did closing fire but missed. I then drew four attack cards, and hit with three - enough to destroy this unit, Julian then turned two from three saving cards, so was fighting back disordered, meaning he had three cards to achieve 9 or better - he turned two nines - BUGGER!

John emulated my cavalry charge in the centre - ultimately with no more success

Royalist dragoons advanced in the open ground to the far left of the Covenanters flank

Johns left flank Covenanter cavalry trying to deploy across the burn to counter Chris's Royalists

Action in the centre as Chris advances his infantry

A Covenanter regiment crosses the Hazlehead burn

Johns cavalry are hit in the flank - in these rules, that doubles the attack cards and the attacked unit does not fight back at all - OUCH!

Having wiped out the previous unit, Chris advanced the length of the stream and took the Lobsters in the flank too - another Covenant unit bites the dust....

Enraged, the final Covenant unit charged one of the dragoon units and wiped them out

Julian's Royalists advance cautiously against my flank

The Covenanter infantry move forward

The Lobsters are taken in the flank

And that bloody Royalist cavalry continue to run amok

Two hits - but I turned a 9 and 10 to save them both - some good cards at last!

And finally, that damned Royalist cavalry were seen off!

But now Julian moved HIS cavalry forward in the centre!

That was my final picture - not included here was my second cavalry charge on the right wing which also nearly succeeded - and then was defeated - nor the third cavalry unit wiped out by Julian's musketry!

Following are a collection of images taken by John during the game - mostly close ups but also a couple of the action as it unfolded

Not sure what the final score was - we started with 14 coins to 13 I think and I can only recall 1or 2 of the Royalist units being destroyed - so while we reached zero, they probably had 9 or 10 coins still in their army morale pile, a comprehensive defeat! 

I was quite intrigued when I copied and pasted the account of the actual battle into this post, how closely our game mirrored reality. without us even knowing anything about the battle at the time we were playing the game! Perhaps the historical initial troop dispositions "forced" John and me to follow similar tactics to those employed by the Covenanter on the day? Ineffectual cavalry attacks on both flanks pretty much sums up what happened to us, although to be fair, a bit of luck would have seen my first charge destroy the Royalist left flank unit and allow me to turn his flank with four regiments of cavalry....and then the battle would have been a very different story! 

A fun game despite the loss and great to actually get my Covenanters on the table representing themselves for a change - we must do Marston Moor one day - THAT would be entertaining!