Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Williamite Army 1691 in 15mm

Peter Allport takes us through his creation of the forces of King Willam III:

My Anglo- Dutch army
1st English Life Guards, Colchester’s horse and the Dutch Van Graben in front line
Inspired by the ‘soft’ Irish climate which produces green fields and damp days, I have created the Anglo- Dutch army trying to gain control of this ‘accursed’ land… here they are outside the gates of Athlone. 

Dutch Nassau-Saarbrucken, Huguenot De la Meloniere and the Coldstream Guards

In total there are 8 horse regiments of 12 figures, 4 Dragoon regiments of 12  and 16 foot regiments of mostly 16-20 figures… flags are by Quindia Studios and really enhance the look and ‘presence’ of the units.
Close up of 1st English Life Guards
Close up of Oxford Blues
Danish Princess Ann and Royal Horse Guards - the Oxford Blues

As Barry has mentioned, my trip to Aughrim, Athlone and the Boyne was fascinating and evocative. Aughrim is one of the most atmospheric and best-preserved (in that nothing has been changed since 1691) battlefields I have ever visited. Only spent a day there but for scale, viewing points, a sense of great events having passed here, it is hard to beat…

Dutch Nassau-Saarbrucken

Looking at a landscape unchanged for centuries, one is literally looking into the past, looking into history…

And of course it’s not rain, it’s Irish mist…!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Ramillies in 15mm

The French Army
Peter is becoming a regular contributor to the blog. As well as sharing my interest in the Williamite campaigns in Ireland and letting us see his 'military history holiday' snaps he also has a very impressive War if the Spanish Succession collection.
Allied Horse
Peter and his friend Paul have a Christmas 'big bash' and I understand that 2014 featured The Battle of Ramillies 23rd May 1706. One of Marlborough's big four.

Peter was kind enough to send some of his pictures for me to share with blog followers and they are impressive.
Very deep French deployment
I have fought the battle only once and that was about 20 years ago on a 20 feet x 6 feet table using 28mm models. I still remember it to this day. We organized a game for Kirriemuir Wargames Club which was run at the church hall. Alas, I have no available digital photos of that event.
Hanoverian Foot
Enjoy the superb minis from Peter's collection here.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Warfare Miniatures GNW Range more news - front rank Musketeers charging in Karpus

Wonderful animation in these musketeers who are bracing themselves for impact with the enemy line.

The figures are available now and come in the five variants shown in each pack.
Units apparently wore either all karpus or all tricorne.
Painted as the Narke Varmlands Regiment which had two battalions
Some models have their hair bagged and others wear it loose.
Bayonet frog and hanger are separate and can be glued at any angle.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Too much of a good thing?

Let them eat ' birthday cake' says Barry Antoinette
"There's no bread, let them eat cake!" is a line I associate less with Marie Antoinette and more with Geddy Lee, bassist and lead vocalist with Canadian power trio  Rush. Those of a certain age will remember Canada's politically motivated virtuoso threesome during the 70s long haired era. It is of course the opening line from their song  Bastille Day. Why mention it?

It came to mind during a recent conversation about trends within the the print side of our hobby press. An industry insider pointed to three major publications placing over heavy reliance on the assets of those who may be described as the hobby's glitterati. Enormous tables, customised terrain, fantastic collections shot in perfect conditions within the bowels of their cavernous wargaming halls.
The result being the same treasure trove appearing simultaneously in each magazine in the same month. Does such sumptuousness irritate the masses and stir up unrest or even resentment?. A little like Hello Magazine shots of some diva in her Monaco palace being compared with most of us living in a modest property on the outskirts of some grimy commuter town. Its not a real life view of the hobby. There will be a reckoning!
Hilton! Just whose side are you on?
That stimulated the conversation within our little gang. Is it a good or a bad trend? Is it even a trend? Views were polarized. One of the lads pointed out if it hadn't been for seeing that style of game at Partizan, Salute and the like, he'd never have pursued his own hobby path. So, it's a good thing to see aspirational games.

The original point was made on the basis that the majority of wargamers would eventually tire of seeing the kind of game they could never stage or participate in. This would lead to an undefined backlash against the magazines or perhaps the glitterati themselves. Not exactly the guillotine but perhaps some form of shunning!
Wait a minute... I thought only the Glitterati did ' beautiful'!
I am not so sure. My immediate reaction when I see some hobby related item done well follows a reasonably set pattern:

ADMIRE: Wow! that looks impressive. They've done a cracking job on it.
INVESTIGATE: How did they manage that? Let's have a closer look at how it was achieved.
CHALLENGE: Could I learn anything from this? Could I do that? What do I need to change to get this kind of result?
USABLE? Wonderful though it is, can I make any practical use of it even if I was able to achieve the same result?
Gaming Aristos - look over your shoulders on dark nights
At no point in the sequence did I detect the slightest element of the green eyed monster creeping in to my attitude. I can honestly say even when I have the occasional personal dislike of an individual or group I have managed to park that emotional disconnection and admire effort for what it is and what it adds to the hobby.

Of course everyone is different and maybe there are entire sub groups of the wargaming fraternity out there who harbour dark thoughts about the glitterati. I say, let the glitterati eat their cake and carry on giving us a peek through the window of their palaces!

What do YOU say?

Menacing? Menace? or full of mince? 

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Williamite War in Ireland 15mm scale

The Army of James II & VII
Many of you will be familiar with Ray's (yar68) wonderful 15mm collection through the League of Augsburg Fighting Talk Forum and his own blog http://onelover-ray.blogspot.com. Ray serves the 15mm LoA community admirably with his excellent units and interesting games.
Another LoA weekend regular and occasional contributor to this blog Peter Allport, also has an extremely impressive 15mm collection which he has been kind enough to share some pictures of with us.
Jacobite battle line
Like myself, Peter's interest in the campaigns in Ireland has been strengthened by actually visiting the battlefields. This has inspired him to complete the armies for the Aughrim campaign and finish them off with some Quindia flags especially printed in 15mm scale.  
Peter wanted me to point out that he doesn't have as much time to paint as before and concentrates on command bases and table dressing 'frippery' so beloved of many wargamers. He was kind enough to say the whole inspiration for this period has come from the league of Augsburg website, books and display games at Newark. 
Panorama of Peter Allport's 15mm Jacobote Army
The figures in the photos  were mainly painted by Damian at Ancient and Modern. The figures are a mix of Lurkio and Donnington (old style) which have a great deal of character. 
That reminds me, I am going to do some Pendraken 10mm stuff(sculpted by Clibinarium) as a little experiment in this period!
Enjoy, and Ray, I hope we can blag some blog copy from you soon on your own collection :) 
Photos by kind permission of Peter Allport.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Fighting Talk 10 Years Old

10 year veterans - Fighting Talk! Salute yourselves Gentlemen!
We wargamers always have something to say, even when we don't. I often get asked about my long term plans and the reactions when I reply... I have none range for incredulity to disappointment. Unimaginative as it may seem, it is true which is why I had not even realised that Fighting Talk, the League of Augsburg Forum is actually 10 years old. I had no long term plan to build it up. It has evolved organically and in truth is no longer driven by me but by a community of contributors and lurkers who keep the whole thing ticking along. I am deeply suspicious of long term plans as they seem to be deliberately poking a finger in the eye of fate, something I am not inclined to do lightly.
FT has supported the launch of 4 books!
So here we are, 10 years on. Reminded of it as I was by my good friend Dave O'Brien it is quite hard to take in. The FT boards have 10 years worth of our collective experiences. I have often copied and filed little gems posted there by the Wargaming Wise who visit occasionally. My problem is, I am usually too busy getting on with something else to realise what is actually happening or that time is passing. The reminder has made me worry that I have not been diligent enough in recording and storing all the valuable material we've uploaded. That task is currently beyond my diary capacity.
The Pack has rarely bayed for blood! - we are a nice bunch
As ' Grand Inquisitor' of the boards I have had relatively little call to interfere, censor, ban, chastise or wield the 'Mighty Sword of Dobber' (Robbie Coltrane fans remember this?) over the decade. There have been a few clowns , several cyber attacks (remember the Turkish Liberation Army or whatever they were called?), We've had Porn Bombing, we've been linked to a variety of websites selling very odd products and we've experienced the dreaded MYSQL thingy that tells us something is wrong behind the scenes. The number of times I have woken up somewhere in the world to an inbox full of mails from concerned forum members telling me 'We're down, did you know?'.. thanks for that chaps, very often I didn't know! Gunter Heim, you are undoubtedly the Guardian of the Forum and have performed that duty like the Captain of the Royal Guard! (Saxon of course!)
Guardians of FT - Saxon Army occupying Austria's capital city
We've had some 'precious moments' too. Sensitive souls who've taken their bats and balls home because someone didn't agree with everything they said, wrote or thought. These little flowers have self censored so that was all fine too. They are living in another garden now.

I have enjoyed the comedy both intentional and accidental and there has been a fair bit of that. The funniest things have usually been at someone's expense but unintentional 'own goals' are often the best. A little bit like 'It'll be alright on the night!'. Up the Town!
Cheers! FT - 10 more!

So, what's the plan? There is none! We'll carry on, we've got hundreds of members live, lapsed, passed, past, forgotten and lost their passwords. Let's chug along for a while and see what happens shall we?

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