Wednesday, September 29, 2010

HäT Industries 28mm Prussian Infantry

HäT Industries has sent another 28mm Napoleonic infantry set for me to review. This time the HäT sculptor has turned his attention to the Prussian army from 1813-5. Three sets are represented here: 28013 Prussian Infantry (Marching), 28014 Prussian Infantry (Action), and 28015 Prussian Infantry (Command).

The figures are very similar in style to the previous HäT 28mm Napoleonics. Once again, HäT has made it possible to field armies of marching units, my preferred pose for horse and musket armies.

The figures are cast in two pieces. Once piece comprised the bulk of each figure, while the other piece consists of backpack, half the rolled greatcoat, and saber. This allows for some nice detail on the back of the figures.

These Prussians scale very well with the Bavarians and French HäT has already released. The Prussians may be a bit beefier, or it may just be the modern cut of the Prussian uniform.

Once again, the HäT figures scale out to about the same height as metal 28mm figures, but they are much more slender. Here is a Prussian next to an Old Glory French Légere.

And here are some Prussians next to some Crusader French line infantry. I'm not sure I would mix HäT with other manufacturers on the same table, but it's certainly possible.

HäT has Spanish, Austrian, and Russian line infantry, as well as Prussian landwehr, in the pipeline. They may also have some French line infantry on the way, which will sure be the most useful set.

Should HäT decide to release cavalry, artillery, and generals to go with these infantry figures, I'll certainly start switching over to HäT for all my 28mm Napoleonic armies. Until they do so, you may have to settle for mixing metals with plastics. Alban Miniatures would be your best bet for a good fit.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

First Play: Regimental Fire and Fury

Today the gaming group came over to my place to take our first run at a Fire and Fury Regimental game. Our scenario was "Breakout from Fort Donelson" from the Guns at Gettysburg "Heartland" scenario book.

Our Group. Not Pictured: Me

The scenario depicts Pillow's attack on the unanchored Union right on February 15th, 1862. Two huge Union brigades are holding a ridge line, and six small Confederate brigades must push them off, take the road behind the ridge, and open a path for the Confederate army to escape.

Union Right, up in the Air

The regiments in this scenario are big! The largest Union regiment weighs in at 18 stands, which represents 720 men. The smallest Union regiment is 14 stands, or 560 men. The Confederates have some large regiments of around 12-14 stands, but many of their regiments are little 6 stand affairs.

Confederates Pin the Center

Most of the Union force is on their left, with five huge regiments and two batteries holding that commanding ridge line. I commanded the Confederate left, and I just didn't have the strength to move the Union off that line. Instead, I hoped to pin the Union forces in this area, holding their attention while Jon took three brigades around the Union right.

My troops lost several stands to artillery fire while crossing the open ground between the two ridges. Two of my veteran brigades were cut to pieces before ever engaging the enemy.

Trouble on the Union Right

Don commanded McArthur's brigade, holding the exposed position on the Union right. His green troops had trouble changing position quickly enough to meet Jon's flank attack.

Union Right Bends

Jon was able to make contact with Don's regiments and force them back. Here we found the biggest difference between RFF and BoFF: the sweeping, lopsided results of BoFF are (mostly) gone. Units take losses and give ground much more slowly. In BoFF, Jon might have swept Don off the ridge in one sudden lunge. In RFF, it took several turns of pressure to make the Union give up their positions.

Pressure in the Center

While Jon pried open the Union flank, I kept up the pressure on the Union center, trying to keep them too off balance to reorient their lines. Again, progress was incremental. In this part of the field, at least, the green Union troops gave as good as they got. I pushed them back a couple hundred yards, but they kept in good order.

Union Flank Attack

On the Confederate right, Scott R. took his Union brigade into the attack. He routed two of my regiments and wore down a third. With more time, this attack might have threatened the Confederate position. But Scott's regiments were slow owing to poor maneuver rolls.

Union Right Crumbles

To make matters worse for the beleaguered Union right, N.B. Forrest arrived with a regiment of cavalry and two regiments of infantry almost in the Union rear. This was too much for the green Union troops, who fled in a panic. The road was open, and the Confederate army could escape.

We played out seven turns of the game, representing 70-105 minutes of real time. The rules keep many of the mechanisms from BoFF, but there are enough nice touches to change the overall feel of the game. We've all been playing Fire and Fury since the rules came out. We enjoyed Age of Eagles very much, feeling that it took a solid game system and refined it, adding some layers of complexity to the Civil War version.

The regimental game seems to take these refinements even farther. The rules allow for period appropriate tactics. A unit's quality makes a real difference to its battlefield performance. The rules are accessible enough that we could jump right into a game with only a brief glance at the reference sheets from time to time. There are enough little nuances that the game feels realistic without being overly complex. I think we'll be playing these rules for a long time to come.

Friday, September 17, 2010

FoG Roman Test Figure

Before I start a big project, I always like to paint a test figure to see if the look I have in my head matches the look I can achieve with my brush. My Field of Glory Roman army will have two legions, each with velites, hastati, principes, and triarii. One legion will have tan tunics, and the other will have faded red. I have different LBMS transfers for each regiment.

I know the red tunics will look good, so I started by painting a figure in tan. I also wanted to see if the bronze armor will look right. I am priming in brown, then drybrushing the armor with a cheap enamel bronze. Here's the test figure.

So what do you all think? Does it look convincing?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Field of Glory Carthaginian Army

Now that the whole Carthaginian army is done, here are some photos of the entire force. The figures are 28mm, mostly Old Glory and Crusader with some Gripping Beast mixed in. Click on the images to get bigger pictures.

Whole Army

Spanish Contingent

The cavalry and generals are Crusader Miniatures. The infantry are from Old Glory.

Liby-Phoenecian Contingent

Hannibal and the elephants are from Crusader. The infantry are Old Glory.


The javelinmen are from Gripping Beast. The slingers are Crusader.

Numidian Cavalry

The front unit are Crusader Miniatures. The rear unit are Gripping Beast.

Gallic Contingent

All the Gauls are from Old Glory. Shield transfers are from Little Big Men Studios.

Carthage's Next General?

The boy is a scratchbuild. We combined figures from the MacPhee and Dahlgren lines.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

FoG Carthaginian Generals

This weekend I turned my brush toward my old project, Second Punic War armies for Field of Glory. With these generals done, my Carthaginian army is complete.

Here are the three stands of generals: Hannibal in the center with his subordinates flanking him. All figures are Crusader.

The subordinate generals are simply pack ANC008 "Carthaginian Cavalry Command." To mark them as generals' stands, I painted their cloaks in garish colors.

And here is Carthage's commander. This is from pack ANC011 "Hannibal Foot and Mounted Versions."

I gave Hannibal the most ornate dress in the army, painting his cloak with two patterns of traditional Carthaginian symbols.

The foot soldiers on Hannibal's stand are from ANC006 "Infantry Command." They wear the same color tunic as my Libyan spearmen. The officer has some slight decoration on his armor.

I had two figures left over: the dismounted Hannibal and another officer. I based these for my Warhammer Ancient Battles army.

Now on to the legions of Rome!

ACW Commission: First Game!

The figures got to Glenn safe and sound, and he has already played his first game with them! You can read a battle report on his blog:

Saturday, September 4, 2010

More Regimental Fire and Fury Confederates

After spending the past five months painting commissions, I wanted to paint something for myself. I primed these figures on Wednesday morning, starting painting Wednesday night, and had them finished last night.

These are all 15mm Minifigs. There are 66 Confederates and 3 Union figures. That will make for 23 Regimental Fire and Fury bases. I'm out of th 25mm x 15mm bases I use for infantry, so these won't be quite ready to hit the gaming table until I get some more.

I've always painted my rebels in a mix of colors, assuming, like most gamers, that the Confederates presented a motley appearance in the field. I've read the various arguments that southern soldiers were more neatly uniformed than most believe, but that position seems a case of special pleading to me. I've read all sorts of first person accounts that the rebels were poorly clothed, with no two were dressed alike, and a few records of uniform issues haven't changed my mind. When our primary sources nearly all agree, and when those primary sources consist of both written descriptions and photos of Confederate soldiers on campaign, any contrary argument has a lot of evidence to provide, and to my mind those arguing for neatly uniformed rebels haven't provided it.

With all that said, I did paint these in a more uniform style than I usually do. The trousers and hats are all different colors, but the jackets are all the same shade of grey. Maybe this is one of those brigades that really did have a recent issue of uniform clothing. To tell the truth, though, I just really wanted to get some figures painted quickly, and giving them all the same jacket color was a good way to speed things up.

Here's where I stand now on my RFF infantry bases. I have many more ACW infantry ready for gaming, but they're all mounted on the 1" x 7/8" bases I use for BoFF. Once I get these last figures based, I'll have enough figures to play a small scenario and try out the RFF rules.