Category: Country

I am fascinated by military history and in particular the history of Spain and Portugal. But with my connections to New Zealand and Israel I’ve also acquired an interest in the wars of those nations as well.


A Case Study in Balagan Thinking – How I justify collecting Japanese

Fuzzy Thinking Brain

If you didn’t know, Balagan means messy or chaotic. And lately my head has definitely been balagan. I’m trying to justify building up a Japanese force for Crossfire. I’m trying to find ways to fit the Japanese into my Official Focus of Spain, Portugal, New Zealand, and Israel. I’ve got to say, it ain’t easy. But with quite a lot of mental gymnastics I might manage it.

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Welsh versus Picts 2 – An Arthurian HOTT Battle Report

Arthurian HOTT 799 The Morrigan appears in front of the Pictish host

Chris Harrod and I had another game of Arthurian HOTT. This featured Chris’s Chris’s Picts on sabots to provide Big Bases. I fielded my Welsh (Cymry) with Arthurian and Reconquista Christian Elements for Big Base HOTT. I went for my traditional historical Welsh option where the religion is implicit. Chris put a Goddess on table (the Morrigan).

Summary: The Morrigan was scary and my Welsh had to dance around a bit, but it turned out god was on our side and Arthur’s host took the day.

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The Battle of Kadesh in David Rohl’s New Chronology

Battle of Kadesh - Phaoroh attacking

The Battle of Kadesh is the first battle in history for which we have detailed accounts of what happened. It features two of the middle eastern heavy weights – Egypt and Hatti – battling it out for supremacy. It also features bit players that would subsequently stand out on the world stage – tribes that would constitute the Sea Peoples fought on both sides at Kadesh. And, if you follow the New Chronology proposed by David Rohl, Pharaoh was rescued by Elite Israelites from Solomon’s Kingdom.

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Welsh versus Saxons – An Arthurian HOTT Battle Report

Arthurian HOTT 671 Welsh mounted go in again

Jamie fancied a bit of Dark Age gaming. So I dragged out my Welsh (Cymry) for Britannia 600 AD and more Fall of Rome figures to make a Saxon army for Jamie.

Hordes of the Things (HOTT) is fast becoming my go to rules for the Dark Ages so this was going to be a bit of Big Base HOTT. Or, more precisely, Arthurian HOTT.

Summary: Grindy dark age affair with lots of flavour. Bad going made the battle bitsy. Arthur took the day.

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Steven’s Arthurian and Reconquista Christian Elements for Big Base HOTT

Christian HOTT 920 Religious Stronghold

I recently rebased my Reconquista armies on Big Bases. That includes the elements I use for Big Base HOTT. In this post I feature the Christians which can also serve in Arthurian HOTT. You might have seen some of these guys on small bases in my Strathclyde Welsh (Northern Cymry) for Britannia 600 AD. Of course they complement my “El Cid” Feudal Spanish Army for Big Base DBA and my Dark Age Horde.

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Darkest Waikato: New Zealand Wars variant for In the Heart of Africa

Darkest Waikato

In 2003 Martin Craig sent me his Heart of Africa (Foundry) variant called Darkest Waikato. In hindsight I wish I’d published them on my site back then. But, in the principle that is it never too late to rectify old mistakes, I’m posting them now. All words are by Martin and the rules are copyright by Martin. You can download the rules as a PDF.

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Sagrajas 1086 – A Big Battle Big Base DBA (BBBBDBA) Battle Report

Sagrajas 22 Castilian centre advances

Chris, Jamie and I played the pick up version of my Sagrajas 1086 – A Big Battle Big Base DBA (BBBBDBA) Scenario. This was an excuse to use my new El Cid Army for Big Base DBA. Each side had 24 elements on a 6′ x 4′ table.

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Sagrajas 1086 – A Big Battle Big Base DBA (BBBBDBA) Scenario

Sagrajas Table for Big Battle Big Base DBA

Chris and Jamie are coming over and I wanted to use my new “El Cid” Feudal Spanish for Big Base DBA. So, of course, I’ve gone crazy and devised a A Big Battle Big Base DBA (BBBBDBA) Scenario for the Battle of Sagrajas 1086. I’ve only gone for 24 elements per side (not 36). We only used the historical context to give a bit of flavour for the pick up game, but I have included suggestions for a more historical simulation at the end.

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Steven’s “El Cid” Feudal Spanish Army for Big Base DBA

El Cid 843 General with Hidalgos

I’ve finally got a proper “El Cid” army. This is DBA army list – III/35b Feudal Spanish 951-1200AD. Of course my army is based for Big Base DBA

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Revised El Cid DBA Army List – III/35b Feudal Spanish 951-1200AD

DBA3.0 Cover

With my new “El Cid” army about to hit the table. I thought I’d have a look at the army list – III/35b Feudal Spanish 951-1200AD. The DBA 3.0 list has changed from the DBA 2.2 version. The changes are generally good but I thought I’d revise it to align more with the related Field of Glory army lists. These changes give more flexibility in the list. Personally I think flexibility is good because, really, we don’t know what any of the armies were really like.

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15mm Wargaming Figures to use for Samurai armies of the Sengoku period 1467-1603

Museum Miniatures sm01 Samurai Kawanakajima Swords

The fact that the Portuguese were in Japan is sufficient excuse for me to consider getting Samurai armies for the the Sengoku period. I thought I’d look at what 15mm figures are available. I found five ranges of figures available and one set of transfers/decals for Sashimono banners. Before I do a (brief) review of the figures I explain what is distinctive about the period I’m interested in.

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My Wishlist for DBA-RRR Big Base Italian War

Italian Wars 47 Existing Figures

You have gathered from my recent posts on the Reformatted DBA-RRR Spanish Army Lists and Reformatted DBA-RRR French Army List that I’m currently keen on DBA-RRR and the Italian Wars (1494-1559 AD). I started this project 20 years ago when I commissioned the Spanish from a professional painting company. I got the Spanish infantry back but I never saw my Spanish cavalry figures or the money again.

It has taken two decades to get over the shock but I’m having another go. I’m repurposing what figures I have for big bases and filling in the gaps. Of course I’m

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Reformatted DBA-RRR Spanish Army Lists (Italian Wars 1494-1558 AD)

DBA-RRR Army List Logo

Tony Aguilar’s DBA-RRR, for DBA Extension rules for Renaissance, Reformation and Restoration 1500-1700, look promising for playing the Italian Wars. Aguilar provides army lists to accompany the rules, based on those for DBR, but I have some gripes with the formatting. In this post I reformat the DBA-RRR Spanish Army Lists (1494-1558 AD) to more closely match the style of other DBx lists. I admit it also helped me internalise the lists – understand them better – with a view to perhaps tweaking them in the future.

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The Embankment – A Crossfire Battle Report

KB4F02 The Railway Embankment

Jamie Wish and Chris Harrod played “The Embankment” (KB4F), the third game of Krasny Bor, featuring the Blue Division in an epic Crossfire campaign. The Spaniards were defending the area of the Leningrad-Moscow Railway line – the Embankment – against overwhelming odds.

Summary: Jamie’s Soviet both infantry and armour – broke through the thin Spanish line. This will make the fourth battle tougher for Chris.

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2017 Reflections of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

Megalomaniac 2017

I have noticed that my The Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian of 2015 was literally a confession, describing my overly inflated ambitions and incomplete projects. But the 2016 edition was more a reflection on my progress against those goals. It has been a 23 months since the 2016 edition and it is time to revisit. But I’m going to split the reflection aspect from the confessions bit. So this is my reflection on the 23 months from the beginning of 2016 to the end of 2017.

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