Tally Ho!

Sunday, 14 August 2022

15mm WWII armour - Panthers and Bears

Our first regular game of What A Tanker saw us take to the Eastern Front. The late war Russians are the only ones that can compete with the Germans on points and so allow you to field some of the heavy stuff. In this weeks game the aim to dominate the table and allow recovery of the Pz IV, which counts as 2 bonus kills.

The Germans fielded a Panther D, 2 * Pz IV J's and a Stug. The Russians had an Su-85, a KV1s,  a T34-76 and a T34-85.

The Germans advanced cautiously into the table seeking cover, with the Panther sitting centre field in a fairly dominate field of fire.  

Panther hunkers down

The early action saw lots of attention focused on the Panther - the downside of being able to see lots is you can be seen and three of the Soviet tanks spent the early rounds pounding away. No terminal damage but it did have its command dice slowly worn away.

The SU-85 engaged one of the Pz IV's and managed to damage it, before the Stug tried a bit of hit and run to engage it and the KV.

With the time running out the SU-95 made a late dash for the objective - accurate fire pushing back the Pz IV. The Panther finally ran out of command dice and so bailed out.  The Russians managed to get two tanks with 6" on the objective and claimed the points.

SU-122 stands in for the SU-85

This left comrade Pavel on 2 kills and comrade Styard 1 kill. Finally  few shots of the battle boards we're using for the game - foam core over mounting board/  


Sunday, 7 August 2022

15mm WWII armour

We find ourselves slightly between games as people are still painting for our planned ACW 28mm campaign, which I hope will start after the holiday period. So as a palette cleansers, and easy game to flex the size of, we're doing a few weeks of WWII tanks.

We're returning to What A Tanker from Two Fat Lardies. Its a slightly silly game as its armour only so it plays a bit more like a land dogfight than "real WWII". It is good fun though and quick to learn. This week we had a quick practice game with 3 * Sherman M4 vs a Hetzer and a Panzer IV.

The terrain was pretty open with a village in the centre of the board. The Germans headed straight for the village in an attempt to consolidate their forces. The British sent one Sherman into the village while flanking on both sides with the other two. 

Panzer IV - Skytrex metal I think

Sherman M4 - Skytrex again

First blood went to the Germans as they destroyed the Sherman which had sped into the  village. The British hit back though, taking out the Panzer IV. 

Both sides then manoeuvred for position in the village but were unable to get a killing blow before time was up. So one kill a piece. 

We (I) was a but rusty on the rules so good to have a trial game. The main issue to watch is being Unbuttoned vs Buttoned and the impact of that on spotting / shooting. 


Saturday, 23 July 2022

The Sun Never Sets - grand finale

The final game of our colonial mini-campaign was Get Off My Land. In this scenario the British must patrol the table, looking to cover 8 points of interest. The Mahdists start with some troops on the table but the rest pop-up from behind cover. This was a double-sized game, so 48 points a side.

The Mahdists deployed several units of riflemen covering the objectives whilst the rest remained hidden, The British deployed in two columns, each containing a mixed-arms force.  

Eastern column

Eastern column

Western column

Western column

The eastern column (mostly Egyptian) pushed quickly into the table rapidly capturing an objective and forcing the Mahdists deploy many of their units before the patrol areas where all covered.

Fearing that they might be out manoeuvred the Mahdists launched a series of attacks in the east using both mounted and foot units. This proved highly effective as one unit after another was gobbled-up in the wave of Beja units.  

By about half way through the game the eastern British had captured 3 objectives but been largely destroyed by the Mahdists.  

In the west the British adopted a more defensive posture using a zariba thorn hedge to protect their position. This led to a slow build-up of Mahdist forces in the area as they sought to achieve a critical mass before attacking.  A series of attacks was rebuffed by the British, which slowly ground-down the attacking Ansar units.  

A brief foray by the 10th Hussars led to the destruction of a couple of enemy units but otherwise they made only limited attacking progress.  

10th Hussars

A game of two halves, but in the end a convincing Mahdists win due to the whole-sale loss of the British eastern column.

Sunday, 17 July 2022

28mm Sudan - Egyptian cavalry

I'm very close now to completing enough figures for 2 * 24 point armies for The Men Who Would Kings. The final units for the British / Egyptians are some European officers and  a unit of Gendarmes.   

Slatin Pasha

Rudolf Carl von Slatin (Slatin Pasha) was a fascinating chap having found his way to the Sudan as a book seller before joining Gordon in Khartoum he survived a military campaign in Darfur, the fall of Khartoum, imprisonment by the Mahdists, escape, and finally the battle on Omdurman. He was knighted by the Queen but returned to his native Austria when WWI broke out to act as an advisor to the Emperor of Austria. He was friends with Baden Powell and founded the Austrian Scouts after WWI.

Slatin Pasha -28mm

Hicks Pasha AKA Stu Pasha

He enjoyed a rather shorter and less illustrious life and is best know for having his command wiped out at the Battle of Shaykan, where his head was cut off and presented to the Mahdi. Its a great figure though and the one I've selected to be me when I fight as the Imperial forces - hopefully I do better than Hicks!  

Egyptian Gendarmes 28mm

In game terms this are being used as a unit of Irregular Cavalry, so 10 strong but more focused on shooting than Regular Cavalry.

So that's my Sudan forces completed for now with two decent sized armies completed. Its a shame as I've really enjoyed painting them so I suspect I will end-up doing some more. The obvious next step would be some Camel Corps and some additional Mahdist cavalry.   


Friday, 15 July 2022

The Sun Never Sets - week 5

 This week's game is certainly one that seems to favour the British forces - they are marching in column when ambushed by the Mahdists. Points are awarded for kills and Mahdists who escape,  giving them a chance to simply melt-away if things get too hot.

Game 1 - 28mm Sudan

Unusually I found myself playing the British so went for a larger number of Egyptians so I could include  the recently completed Gendarme cavalry. The British lined up in column with the mounted skirmishing ahead. 

Egyptian Gendarmes

As the Mahdists appeared the British quickly formed a defensive position and awaited the attack. Mahdist sniping proved fairly effective and was able to pin a couple of units, creating a chance to attack.  

To relieve the pressure the Gendarmes staged a couple of charges to clear away some Mahdist units. They could not though prevent the Ansar from destroying the Gatling Gun and threatening to overrun the rear of the column.    

Some accurate shooting was just able to pin the lead Mahdist unit and beat-back the attack. British Win. 

Game 2 - 20mm Sudan

In this game the British also deployed in a tight square but with the Hussars looking to rnage further afield in spoiling attacks. Due to the room layout the Mahdists were only able to attack from 3 sides. 

The square stood while the Hussars engaged the Mahdist cavalry to stop a complete encirclement.  

In the end the natives made little progress and were unable to get very close to the British, losing too many troops from shooting. British Win