Tally Ho!

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

The Crusades - A Kings of War Historic Campaign

This week we begin our latest campaign and so it seemed useful to publish the proposed rules. We'll be using Mantic's Kings of War with some of the campaign additions from Clash of Kings.

Short is the way, little the labour

- Baleric of Dol, 1095


The First Crusade began when Emperor Alexios I of Byzantium requested western help in repelling the Seljuk Turks from his lands. Seeing an opportunity to recapture Jerusalem, Pope Urban II called the council of Clermont on November 25 1095 with the aim of raising an army. So it was that a Crusade was declared and several armies set forth to recapture the holy lands.

Turn Sequence

The campaign concerns the advance of two Crusader armies as they attempt to recapture Jerusalem from the Islamic Saracen forces. Each turn the Crusader attempt to capture a town and fend off a relief force. A 5,6 (D6) is needed to capture the town with +2 per the after the first.          

All games are fought with 3000 points. Initial army lists are provided and may be varied as the campaign progresses, with a maximum of 500 points changing. 


Objective: Both sides total the points of enemy routed units. Highest wins so long as the different is 10% of the starting army points.

Objective: Both sides total the points of their troops inside the enemies half. Highest wins so long as the difference is 10% of the starting army points.   
Setup: There is a prominent terrain piece in the centre of the table.
Objective: Both sides total the points with 12” of the table centre. Highest wins so long as the difference is 10% of the starting army points.   

Setup: D3+4 objectives are placed on the table. Players place them alternately. None may be closer than 12” to another
Objective: Winner is the one controlling the most objectives. To do this be within 3” of an objective with no enemy within 3” 
Setup: Place 3 objectives on the centre line. One is dead centre and one is placed by each side, not within 12” of another.
Objective: Units captured them by touching them. Units speed is then slowed to 5”. You win by controlling or exiting the most objectives.
Kill and Pillage
Setup: Follow the process for Pillage.
Objective: Count points as for Kill but also add 10% of the original army total for each objective controlled.
Objective: Place bounty tokens on your 3 most expensive units. Additionally place an objective marker in the dead centre. Gain:
·         1 VP if you hold the objective
·         1 VP for each friendly bounty not routed
·         2 VP for each enemy bounty routed
Roll for Scenario
1.    Kill
2.    Invade
3.    Dominate
4.    Pillage
5.    Loot
6.    Special (1D4 below)

Special battles
1.    Kill and Pillage
2.    Eliminate
3.    Hill Top Defence
4.    Ambush


Units can grow in experience as the campaign progresses and become more powerful. At the end of each battle the winner gets 3 experience rolls and the loser 1. You may have as many experienced units as you wish in your roster but a maximum of 5 can be fielded for each battle.

Infantry / Cavalry
Veteran: Chose a Vet ability upto 20 points
8 / 9
Skilled: +3 attacks, max 3 times
Furious: Gain Vicious ability
Trail blazer: Gain Pathfinder ability
4 / 5
Rallying: Gain Rallying (1) or add 1 to Rallying ability
Grizzled: Gain Elite ability
6 / 7
Brave: +1 nerve, max 3 times
Inspiring: Gain Inspiring or become Very Inspiring if already Inspiring 
General / Officer
Veteran: Chose a Vet ability upto 20 points
8 / 9
Skilled: +1 attacks, max 3 times
Furious: Gain Vicious ability
Trail blazer: Gain Pathfinder ability
Rallying: Gain Rallying (1) or add 1 to Rallying ability
Grizzled: Gain Elite ability
Inspiring: Gain Inspiring or become Very Inspiring if already Inspiring 
Dread: Gain Dread ability, so enemy units in 6” may not benefit from Inspiring
6 / 7
Brave: +1 nerve, max 3 times

The capture of Antioch and Aleppo gives the Crusaders access to the following items. These items must be carried by a unit and may be lost to the enemy.

Antioch: Holy Lance – Disciplined. Unit is Headstrong
Aleppo: Icon of Saint Simeon – Sacred Standard. Reroll routs even if not Inspired.  

Sunday, 13 January 2019

KOW Vanguard - last reinforcements

Its nice to see the end of painting project so you can start focusing on the next. This week I've managed to complete the final set of units for my Kings of War Vanguard.

Just one unit for the Abyssal Forces - a Hellhound. Mantic don't produce a model for this so I've been donated a metal figure on unknown origins.

Next up a Skink Priest for my Salamander army and also to provide a dismounted Wizard for a future Vanguard force. He's a Games Workshop figure and my favourite of the group.

Finally some figures that can do double / triple duty. The models are Games Workshop Sequistors - presumably some sort of celestial bailiffs.... These first two would work well as Paladin Defenders or even Ogre Palace Guards as they are larger than Mantic Basileans.

This chap is the least heavily armed and will serve as a Basilean War Wizard, albeit one who has some Ogre blood to explain his stature.


Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Battle of the 6 Generals - 28mm Napoleonics

Diaries meant that this Christmas game actually happened in early January. This at least meant most if the mince pies and turkey has been cleared away. We went for a simple set-up inspired by the Battle of the 4 generals over at Hinton Hunt.

The setup was very simple - each side began with 2 infantry and 1 cavalry divisions. There were three objectives to capture; a central farm complex, a prominent hill and a cross roads. The forces were a polyglot lot with French / Danish (the French) squaring off against Russians, Austrians, and Germans (the Allies).

Long view from the French left

View from the French right

Half the Allied horse

Russians and Germans

Austrians ready to go

French forces opposite the Austrians

Danes ready to attack the farm

Allied horse

Both sides advanced rapidly at the start of the game. The Austrians on the Allied right were the most cautious, lurking behind the crest of the prominent hill in search of a counter-punch. In the centre the Russians and Danish both advanced on the farm with the green hordes establishing a small foot hold.

Russians contest the farm 
A swirling cavalry melee developed on the Allied left as both sides sought to control the crossroads. A dozen units of 28mm cavalry certainly made a stirring sight. The melee quickly swung decisively in favour of the French though and it was soon clear it was a matter of time before this flank was theirs.

Battle is joined
On the hill the French pushed forward and took a big risk by cresting the rise in the hopes of pouring decisive fire into the waiting Austrians.  Fortune, and a flanking attack that drew away some Austrians, meant the French pluck was rewarded and they were able to establish themselves on the crest. This was a position they would maintain for the rest of the game.  

French take the hill

The hill is secure 
Centrally the Russians / Germans were able to exert pressure on the Danish and reduce their presence in the farm to a single battalion.  Although formally still contested it was clear the Russians likely had the strength to clear the farm.

Danes hanging-on in the farm

So the game ended 2-1 to the French after several hours of fierce fighting. The pictures don't quite capture but there certainly is something about seeing 50+ large units of 28mm slugging it out.

Saturday, 5 January 2019

KOW Vanguard - forces of the Abyss

The final output from my Christmas painting surge is the Forces of the Abyss for Vanguard. Basically they are demonic army with lots of cheap stuff and some hard-hitting backup.

Lower Abyssals are basic melee Grunts to bulk out the army.

Succubi are slightly tougher melee Warriors. They also have Fatal Attraction which reduces the chances of enemies hitting them.

Flame Bearers are basic shooty Grunts with a short 9" range.

Abyssal Guards are another melee Warrior unit. This time with Crushing Strength and better armour than the Succubi.

Succubi Lurkers are a Support unit. These are stealthy scouts with good melee but weak armour, so perhaps assassins to take out other players leaders.

Gargoyles are quick flying melee troops with good regeneration. I think these are my favourite models and paint-up well with my favoured wash/dry-brush method.

The Hellequins are fast and hard-hitting Support troops, providing some much needed attack power. The Blood-masque (axe armed)  is one of the Command options - he's melee oriented with no warband-wide abilities.

The Seductress is a further Command option. She's quick and string in melee with the ability to confuse the enemies using various tricks. Generating good power dice I can see her being popular. The Imps are a high wound (3) Grunt unit that may be food for tying-down the enemy.

The only Caster available is the Abyssal Warlock. He's a basic caster with some regeneration. The model is a great concept seeing him sat atop a demon. Being Large though its a choice between him or the Despoiler in most games.

The Despoiler is Large and a is a big, strong, tough, fighter who will want to  engage the enemy rapidly.

Finally the whole army. I've not played it yet but on paper it seems the plan would be to take lots of cheap Grunts / Warriors to unlock the plentiful Support options. You then likely have to chose to take either the Warlock, the Despoiler, or the Hellequins as the centre-piece of the warband.


Thursday, 3 January 2019

Scrath-built seige equipment - this years Christmas makes

In best Blue Peter tradition I like to make something over the Christmas period that I can use in my forthcoming games. This year I opted for some siege equipment to go along with the inclusion of sieges in Clash of Kings 2019. It should see action in the upcoming Crusader historic campaign and also the planned fantasy campaign.

I already have some mantlets and ladders from a previous game so I've supplemented them with siege towers and catapults. More details below.....


These are constructed from 6mm beading obtained cheaply from the local DIY store. Each is about
100mm long by 60mm wide. The card on the corners adds some strength to the but-joints and also allows some detailing later.

Simple frames are constructed for the "stop" and then catapult arms added from a carved lolly stick. The whole construct is then added to a base for additional rigidity. I opted not to bother with wheels but these could be easily added.

Finally they are painted with acrylics, which really bring them to life.

Rear view

Front view

Siege towers

The siege towers were a slightly more involved build. I started with 3 sides made from card with reinforcements that would support the floors - vital to make the structures rigid. I went for 120mm wide and 190mm high, with space to accommodate three standard Kings of War infantry regiments or Armati units. 

 The sides of the box are then glued in place, with one hinged to form the draw-bridge. I did nt add chains or ropes but this could have easily been done at this point. The whole structure is glued with PVA and made from 3mm artist board. With the walls and floor in place it surprisingly strong.
Two floor and part of the front in place

Completed structures with the bridges in place 
 Detailing is needed though otherwise these would be somewhat slab-sided and dull. So I went for some timber framing made from extra-long matches, again glued with PVA. Wheels were added from some 20mm round plastic bases leftover from my Perry 8th Army.

As with the Catapults it they were finished with acrylic paints and dry-brushed to bring out the textures.
Front view with troops in place - 28mm crusaders

Rear view