Saturday, December 14, 2013

Russian Battleships of the Battle of the Yellow Sea

Good Day Friends! 

As promised here are some pictures of the Russian Battleships that took part in the Battle of the Yellow Sea 1904 during the Russo-Japanese War.

I had posted pictures of the Tsesarevits (A GHQ model) and here I am posting the rest of the ships. These are all War Times Journal Rapid Prototype models. They are very nice models and easy to paint. No flash, not need to glue parts together. A joy to paint. The only thing I would caution people with is that these are fragile in the smaller things like cannon barrels or air circulation funnels. So definitely handle with care. That said that is a minor condition. I can happily recommend these to anyone interested in the pre-dreadnought era. 

All the ships together.

A view of the fleet with  a Peresvet class battleship in the foreground

The Pobeda and the  Peresvet. They truly look like castles of steel.

Business end of the Peresvert class. 

The Petropavlovsk calss battleships Sevastopol and Poltava 

Another view

The american-built one of kind battleship Retvizan, the Russian hero-ship of the Battle of the Yellow Sea

Another view!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A change in title

I have finally deposited with success my dissertation and will be awarded a PhD in Political Science from my graduate school. This has been a long family and personal goal and after a 5 year period it has been attained. To reflect this I have decided to change the title of this Blog. The URL is still the same , so you should be able to find it whenever you need!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Star Trek: ADB and Wizkids

Good Day

A small follow up post to yesterday's super post. Here are some pictures of my repainted Whiz-kids Star Trek ships next to my ADB ships. Not bad I would say. I can use the Wizkids ones for battleships etc in the ADB world. 

A romulan dreadnought and batle-cruiser 

A federation Task force of two frigates, A Heavy Cruiser, A Battle Cruiser, and a Dreadnought

A Klingon Task force of a frigate, destroyer, War Cruiser, Battle Cruiser and Two Battleships

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving Update

Good Friends

I wish you a great Thanksgiving or any other holiday, or simply vacation you are enjoying. If you are not enjoying one, I wish that your week is going good.

I this bi-weekly update of my blog I have four items to present: A riveting SAGA battle in which I forced the first draw to the undefeatable Irish of Keith, the proprietor of Galactic Comics and Games. A battle in the age of sail, as I used Kiss Me Hardy to play a scenario based on the Action of 13 January 1797. A write up of my three year (in game time) run of a Lyran-Kzinti war for Federation and Empire. And some painting I did. Please enjoy!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Gaming Update at Phd Leadhead : Saga and Federation and Empire

Good day to all!

I got the chance to put some gaming in these last two weeks. On Halloween I went to Galactic Comics to enjoy some Saga. Fresh from my double victories the week before, I took on the undefeated Irish warband of Keith, one of the store owners. The fight was going to be a good old set piece battle! With a cry of "Gomitme"! I arranged my shieldwall on a gentle hill.

I had
1 Unit of 12 Levies
2x Units of 10 Warriors
1 Unit of four warriors hidden away from the front line for dice generation.

He had

2x Bodyguards
1 Hearth-guard of 6 miniatures
1 Unit of 7 hounds (counts as warriors)
1 Unit of 8 Warriors

The two war-bands arrayed 

 The view from the Anglo-Saxon line, with my warlord exhorting the men!

The shield-wall from the Irish point of view.

I opened up with a decisive advance of the shield wall. 

One of my warrior units was attacked by the Irish Hearth-Guard and the Warlord. The battle did not go well for them and they lost 6 men to combination of Irish swords and javelins. Meanwhile my other Warrior unit also lost two men to Javelins.

My Levy crashed into the Hearth-guard and using repeated attacks devastated it, leaving only 2 of 6 hearthguards alive in exchange for 2 Levies. Meanwhile my larger warrior unit killed one of the Irish bodyguards, at the cost of two Warriors.

The battle saw a lull, as I pulled my 3 unit warriors back to save the saga dice, and the Irish warlord stayed away from the levy which finished off the hearth-guard. T

hat said the significant losses incurred meant that a lot of my battle-board abilities were lost to me. 

And my dice were no exactly helpful! 

My remaining forces were sandwiched between the two Irish warrior units. Meanwhile the remaining bodyguard was making sport of my attempts to kill him.

Javelins finished off my 3 warrior unit, costing me a saga dice.

My warlord and 4 warrior unit forced the bodyguard back, while my levies gave the Irish dogs a bloody nose, at a price though! 

Since this is VP game, I sent my Warlord off to try and kill the remaining Irish Warriors, while javelins reduced my warrior unit to one brave but battered man.

My plan failed! as my attacks failed to go through

The enemy closes on my battered forces! 

While the hounds and javelins destroy my remaining units.

The Irish bodyguard comes forward to claim glory, and he and my warlord match sword to axe! 

Alas, tis not the day for Saxon Arms. My warlord falls and I lose the game, with Keith's Irish remaining undefeated in their 11th game!

That weekend I went to  a Halloween party. I dressed up (or tried to do so) as Emperor Maximilian of Mexico. 

This week I sat down to play the introductory scenario for the ADB strategic war-game "Federation and Empire". The scenario was the "Squall" which is a one turn learning scenario pitting the Kzniti and Lyran polities. The game is a contradiction. The basic game is a fun game with fairly simple rules, but it becomes marred by the many special rules, special units etc. That said I went though the two player turns of the first game turn, and did the economy phase fully since I may play a couple more years of the war in order to learn the rules better.

The game began with a massive Lyran invasion of Kzinti space, and battles around the border battle stations. The Kzin lost the  three stations on the boarder and two of their provinces had Lyran unit in, but were able to take advantage of the massive retreat of crippled units from the Lyran side to kick out most of the lyran foces into the border region.

The map shows the situation at the end of the 1st Game Turn. Both the Kzinti and Lyrans have new fleets in their capitals. One Kzinti province is under Lyran control, while the Kzinti fleets have amalgamated and are situated with hexes containing a Starbase and a Battle Station. The Lyran forces are mostly concetrated in the ex-neutral zone between he two empires. The next turn they will probably make a try against the Kzinti fleet at the starbase.

The two forces at the end of the first game turn. The Lyrans suffered a massive amount of crippled unit that have been concentrated in a Lyran fleet deep in Lyran territory for repair. The Kzintis have also done this. If one counts only battle-ready fleets than the Kzinti are doing well. But the Lyrans do outnumber them in number of available units. 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Saga and Warhammer!

Good Day to all

Last Thursday I played two Saga games with my anglo-saxons. I won both, which were the first single victories I have had since I started Saga. Feeling indebted to my little plastic toy warriors, I decided to begin painting them. So here is the first picture with the Warlord and Four miniatures that could stand for hearthguard/ thengs. They are Gripping Beast Plastics, which are well worth their money. I have another 30 to paint for my 4 pt warband.

Game wise at 4 pts initially I ran 3 units of warriors 8 each, and a unit of 12 spear-armed levy. This turned out risky as the units of warriors are too fragile. Now I play 2 units of 10 warriors, a unit of 4 warriors (for the Saga-dice) and a unit of 12 spear armed levy. This list was the winning list in the two games. Essentially this is an attrition list in which you lunch continuous attacks on the same target to kill it off. You usually outnumber the enemy which helps. Also because the unit of warriors are bigger, they benefit from Anglo-Saxon abilities longer than 8 member units, and keep your saga dice at the magical 5 longer.

I am also slowly working on finishing my 1000pt Beastmen Army for my Warhammer1000 project. Here is the warlord. Nothing to write home about, but an adequate figurine

Game wise, I have being reading the Perfect Captains rules for Iron-Bow II (+ Strongbow) and for Hoplomachia. The Captain always has good rules and I want to try it. A new principle I am playing with is that if I just want to try the rules and not invest in painting armies, I will play them in 1/72. This way I can create huge armies cheap, and 1/72 does not look as bad unpainted as the other scales.

That is all! Good gaming and painting to all!

Friday, September 27, 2013

More Saga

Yesterday I got in two more games of SAGA at Galactic comics and games in Statesboro. I decided to try some of the fantasy boards created on the internet which I have found at this excellent German blog SAGA Fantasy Battle-boards . My fellow players were nice enough to let me use them so it was great. Miniature wise until I find the time and money to get some more appropriate minis, I have been press-ganging my Warhammer Beastmen.  Which is fine by me !

The first game was against a Byzantine warband and it was a game of Escort. He had to escort three pieces of baggage (a magic sword, a cow, and a magic book :p), across the board from his edge to my edge. I played Mordor organised into a large group of Hearthguard, a large group of warriors , and my warlord. 

The Byzantines sent a small unit of mounted kavallaraioi (Hearthguard) to tackle my Hearthguard, while the rest offered close escort to the baggage. My warriors moved to block that escape path. 

My warlord got peppered with arrows which though did not hurt him. The idea of man-flesh and horse-flesh for dinner excited my creatures!

The kavallaraioi charged into my warrior unit  but were driven back by their bestial rage. 

Another tussles and my warriors got their taste for man-flesh and horse-flesh satiated (Come on it was a funny scene in the Two Towers movie adaption: MAAANN FLESSSSHH)

In the end though a combination of his warlords suicidal bravery, and single-mindedness to save the baggage, gave the game to the Byzantines!

The second battle was a bit more to my liking. A Challenge! A mighty clash of two warlords to see who is more badass. As per rules the two warlords start close to each other, while their peeps are on the sidelines, rushing to join in the glorious carnage. I played the Goblin Battle board while my opponent was an Irish warband, which also had dogs. My warband was made of two units of hearthguard (8 and 4), and a unit of warriors (8). 

The battle started well for me, as I moved first. Arrgghh! My warlord and hearth-guard crushed into his, shaving off 6 of 12 hitpoints (in Challenge warlords have 12 instead of 2 hit-points) . 

However, at a terrible price. His own warriors and bodyguards came up to help his warlord!

While the warlords clashed, my hearthguard was whittled down bit by bit, even though at times my dice were really good. Try as I might, for the rest of the game I was unable to take any more HPs from the Irish chief.

And the Irish were more than willing to use cowardly javelins to pester me! 

Warriors and warlord would clash with warlord, but my big horned goblin king held his ground! Fatigue began accumulating to both sides. 

Meanwhile my second hearth-guard and his war-hounds edged to the fight. 

A scene from the nightmares of fantasy authors! A beast vs. beast battle! The hounds tore the flesh of my monstrosities eradicating the last of my big hearth-guard unit! 

Meanwhile my warriors on the other flank and his warriors engaged in a see-saw battle!

My warlord feels a bit isolated! But no matter! The Eye protects and man and dog flesh shall succor! 

HAHAHAHAH! TO THE DEATH! Another massive Irish attack on my warlord fails to do the job.

Man is repalced by his best friend, as the warhounds bark and jump to tear the flesh of my warlord1

But alas for the puppies, they shall be food tonight! 

My remaining hearth-guard come up to help! While fatigue starts to accumulate to dangerous levels among the warriors of Erin. 

Dice are rolled and hits are thrown as my beast tries to kill the enemy chief! 

But it was not meant for the Dark Eye to win today. The Irish warlord smashed his sword into mine, and does enough damage so that he can win the fight, even though my ravaged warlord is still alive. 

The last of my hearth-guard kill one of the bodyguards of the Irish warlord.

And in the end , all side exhausted the forces of the Eye slither away in darkness to dark dens to nurture their wounds!

All in all it was a blast. I did not feel I got a chance to fully explore the Mordor Battle-board in the first battle, but the fight was different from the usual. The second battle was epic!  The Irish are fun and interesting enemy, and the Goblins battleboard while not fully facile due to the low numbers of my warband, made my warlord a rock on which the Irish storm broke. In the end I lost, but it came after a game full of many good "what the devil" moments and a lot of mayhem!

As it should be in Saga!