Books – Reorganising my history bookcase made me think about my interests

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My big history book case is in the living area and not surprisingly my wife gets annoyed when the books get messy. Recently I tidied it up. Aside from the fact it took hours – which I didn’t enjoy – I found it interesting what this filing task highlighted about my interests. Aside from my enduring interest in all things Spanish and Portuguese, it turns out I have quite a big interest in World War II (okay, not so surprising), and a huge interest in Colonial Empires with a side order of Cold War.

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Gothic Shield Shapes – There is no such thing as a Gothic ‘Coffin’ Shield

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The wargaming community is full of myths that seem to perpetuate through the generations. Previously I poked at the the unconvincing myth about Visigothic Gardingi being unarmoured skirmishing cavalry, today I look at the ‘coffin’ shaped shield of the Goths. Early Gothic, specifically Visigothic, warriors are believed by some to have carried an odd ‘coffin’ shaped shield. It isn’t true. Germanic warriors only carried round, oval and hexagonal shields. Shapes that were used from the 1st century through the Fall of Rome. Round and oval shields continued in use into the dark ages.

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Download Twilight of the Britons – Fast play rules for the English Invasion of Britain

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For a long time I’ve been looking for a set of wargaming rules for the Arthurian age i.e. the Dark Age in Britain. Having tried lots of commercial rules, Vincent Tsao and I have written our own. Called Twilight of the Britons – Fast play rules for the English Invasion of Britain it is a variant of Twilight of the Sun-King (2001 version) . It covers the warfare in Britain from Roman departure (410 AD) until the English installed a Briton of Strathclyde as King of Scotland (1054 AD). The six page booklet contains only two pages of rules and four pages of army lists.

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2022 Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

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I am pretty happy with my efforts in 2021 and now it is time to lay out my plans for 2022. As always they are crazy megalomaniac plans. 2021 proved that even pumped I can’t achieve all my annual goals. But I’ll try.

I start with a brain dump of my active projects, i.e. those all projects that are more or less “in progress”. The list is split into three parts: likely in 2022, unlikely, and background activity.

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2021 Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

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2020 was a good year for wargaming projects and I thought I should lay out my plans for 2021. Crazy megalomaniac plans, of course.

As usual I’ve done a brain dump of my active projects, i.e. those all projects that are more or less “in progress”. No off the wall fantasy here. They are all active but I have to admit that some of them are on a slow burn. A very slow burn. So I’ve split the list into parts: likely in 2021, unlikely, and background activity. You get to have a say in the priority order – see the aside.

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Four Player Big Battle Big Base Triumph in the Punic Wars

Triumph-295 Iberians form battle line in woods

We played Big Base Triumph in the Punic Wars – liked the Triumph rules but thought some of the troop types sucked. To really challenge ourselves and test out that impression, we played another, bigger, game with Iberians on the table in force. So “Light foot” for both Scutarii and Caetrati and “Javelin Cavalry” for Roman, Numidian, Carthaginian, big shield Iberians, and small shield Iberians. I felt, somehow, I was about to rub salt in the wounds. Of course this is Punic Wars.

Summary: Romans (Chris, Adam) beat Allied Carthaginian (Jamie) and Iberians (Steven)

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2020 Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

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2020. New year. New decade (depending on how you count these things). 2019 was a good year but I want 2020 to be even better. My crazy inner megalomaniac demands I monologue about my world conquering (i.e. overly ambitious) list of what I’d like to get done this year. Get ready for the ride …

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DBA 3 – Improving the Simulation – Some Comments

Joe Collins has highlighted a number of problems with DBA 3.0 and suggested ways to address these problems. Collin’s was part of the group that developed DBA 3.0 so he is both a fan and on the inside team. I really like Collin’s attempt to tackle some big problems with DBA. It would be great if more people did this, starting with Phil Barker. Unfortunately, Collin’s particular suggestions mostly leave the problems unsolved. I do like his solution for Bow but even that needs more.

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Constructing 24 element armies for DBA and DBA-RRR

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Our recent game of DBA-RRR with 24 elements a side, shared between two players was great fun. But it did exhaust my supply of figures, as I’d collected enough for 12 point armies using all options. It also resulted in both army looked pretty much identical. Lots of shot, men-at-arms, and light horse. With as few pike as possible. I think more games with 24 point armies are quite likely in the future, but I’d like the army lists some real choices in what troops appear on table. So how should I arrange my 24 point army lists?

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2019 Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

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So here we are. 2019. My inner megalomaniac is as crazy as ever. I’ve talked about my recent successes in 2018 Reflections of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian. Now it is time for the overly ambitious, world conquering even, list of what I’d like to get done this year.

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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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