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.


Making a ditch and bank for the Italian Wars

Ditch and Bank 43 Swiss attacking Spanish camp

The Spanish surprised their French and Swiss opponents in the Italian Wars by putting arquebusiers behind a ditch and bank. So I thought I should make one. Or, more accurately, make some modular sections of ditch and bank so I can make any shape of fortifications. The modular features are using my Big Bases for use with Big Base DBA and DBA-RRR.

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Choosing a date for a DBA-RRR game in the Italian Wars

DBA-RRR Army List Logo

DBA-RRR has lots of army lists for the Italian Wars. I can field all the variations so the question is, which army lists will we use for each game. In our recent games we have arbitrarily chosen a date and that has given us the army lists. One night I went for 1512 (Battle of Ravenna) and another night Adam chose 1525 (Battle of Pavia).

I’d like to systematise the choice, preferably using a die roll or cards. So in this post I do a bit of analysis on the battles in the Italian Wars and line them up

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Armies and enemies of the Portuguese in Africa 1415-1670

1670-79 Kongo - Soldiers - Ezio Bassani

Armies and enemies of the Portuguese in Africa 1415-1670 This review of warfare focuses on south central Africa, from what is Angola (west central Africa) today to Mozambique (south-east Africa). This area is what the Portuguese referred to as a the Pink Map during the Scramble for Africa although I do a small diversion to Ethiopia. The review is not complete but I figured I should publish it as is and refine over time. This is the period before the Scramble for Africa, the early period of the Portuguese explorers – the period some historians call Medieval Africa.

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Pick up game in Burma – A Crossfire Battle Report

Burma Close Up 90 Japanese Standard Bearer

Jamie couldn’t make it to our regular meet up, so Adam brought along his fresh off the painting blocks figures for the Burma Campaign and I set up a pick up game that I thought would be interesting. Japanese Imperial Army and British 14th Army. Adam doesn’t yet have enough figures for Mac’s Missions in Burma, so this is a fairly small game in Crossfire terms.

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Kiwis in Italy – Two Crossfire Battle Reports from Bruce Stewart

BS 18 9 first attempt to flank church

Bruce Stewart has a collection of Kiwis for the Italian Campaign. He posted a couple of Crossfire after action reports on Facebook and gave me permission to repost them here. One of them is for my own 2 Companies a Side – A Generic Crossfire Scenario. The second is a scenario from the Italian 1944. Bruce games with 1/56 figures and 1/48 – 1/50 vehicles. Being from Facebook these are predominantly photographic reports.

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Crossfire Stocktake – My forces for the Eastern Front

Crossfire Order of Battle Logo

Given the upcoming year long campaign for Stalingrad, I thought I should do a stocktake of Crossfire forces for the Eastern Front. It turns out my collection is insane. Your average gamer doesn’t need this. If you are new to Crossfire then you can get by with a lot less figures; check out How many figures will I need to start playing Crossfire? For the first 10 years of my Crossfire gaming, I only had a reinforced battalion for each of Germans and Russians, backed up by a couple of Pz III Gs and three T-34s. That was more than

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2018 Reflections of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

Megalomaniac 2018

Continuing my Megalomaniac tendencies, this is my reflection on 2018 and how I did against my world conquering goals. Check out my 2018 Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian for my overly ambitious aspirations.

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African Ambush 3 – A Crossfire and Fogo Cruzado Battle Report

PCWA785 Insurgent patrol

Chris Harrod and Adam Landa played my Ambushed Patrol – A Crossfire and Fogo Cruzado Scenario twice in one evening. I’ve already posted their first as Play Test 2. This was their second game of the evening. Of course it is for the Portuguese Colonial War.

Summary: Intense game with thrusts and counter thrusts. Although considerably outnumbered Adam’s Portuguese Commandos successfully ambushed the Insurgent patrol.

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African Ambush 2 – A Crossfire and Fogo Cruzado Battle Report

PCWA771 Portuguese Patrol

Chris Harrod and Adam Landa came over to experiment with my Ambushed Patrol – A Crossfire and Fogo Cruzado Scenario. So, for a few hours, we went back to the bush in the Portuguese Colonial War. It was an experiment and we learnt a bunch of things.

Summary: Short and brutal game. Adam’s Portuguese successfully fought their way out of the ambush.

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African Ambush – A Crossfire and Fogo Cruzado Scenario

PCWA05 Portuguese patrol entering village

An armed patrol walks into an ambush somewhere in Portuguese Africa. The action starts seconds before the bullets fly. Will the unsuspecting targets spot the danger before it is too late? This is a Crossfire/Fogo Cruzado scenario for the Portuguese Colonial War. The scenario uses a cinematic premise, i.e. start the action when there is action.

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Using Political Tokens for Military-Political Climate in an Insurgency Campaign

Portuguese Political Tokens Logo

I think the maxim “war is the continuation of politics by other means” particularly applies to insurgencies such as the Portuguese Colonial War. So I wondered how I could use Political Tokens for a campaign set in the Portuguese Colonial War.

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Painting the windscreen of a wrecked Portuguese staff car

I got a Destroyed Mercedes model from Peter Pig. Don’t ask me why. It seemed cool I guess. So while I was painting my reconnaissance vehicles, I thought I’d paint this baby too. As a wrecked Portuguese staff car for the Portuguese Colonial War.

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Painting Recce Vehicles for the Portuguese Colonial War

Step 9 - Spray matt varnish

I’ve had a busy week. At work and at home. But I found few hours to paint some Portuguese vehicles, mostly reconnaissance scout cars and armoured cars. All for the Portuguese Colonial War. With so many to paint I got into a bit of a production line. Here’s how I did it.

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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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