1643 Game 7 – Lower Thames Valley – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-702 Late Round - Strategic Situation - Royallists Attack London - Banner

Adam and Chris played the seventh game of Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our four player Campaign using Tilly’s Very Bad Day, and set in the English Civil War.

Summary: Although caught by a larger Parliamentarian force, Adam had spectacular victory at the “Real Battle of Turnham Green”. London fell to the Royalists. The campaign cards were critical to the battle with the interventions of John Hurry and Sergeant-Major-General Boy, the ‘Dog-witch’, deciding the outcome.

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1643 Game 6 – Wales – English Civil War Campaign

Jamie and I played the sixth game of Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our four player Campaign using Tilly’s Very Bad Day, and set in the English Civil War.

Summary: Although the Royalists invaded Wales, the Parliamentarians had a larger army on the day and attacked. The “Battle of Colby Moor” was a Royalist victory.

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1643 Game 5 – Upper Thames Valley – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-508 Bombardment - Parliamentary General becomes casualty - Banner

Adam and Chris played the fifth game of Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our four player Campaign using Tilly’s Very Bad Day, and set in the English Civil War.

Summary: After losing a general in the preliminary bombardment, Parliament fought well but could not break the Royalists within the game limit. Royalist victory at the “Battle of Chalgrove Field”.

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1642 Declaring for King or Parliament – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-454 Consolidation Round - Final - Banner

In Populous, Rich and Rebellious, the first year of the Campaign ends with a “Consolidation Round”. This is the English Civil War and the idea is, after a few battles, every region declares for either King or Parliament. In our campaign the two sides started the consolidation round even, with 3 regions each, but finished with Parliament significantly ahead.

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1642 Game 4 – East Anglia – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-449 That is a lot of routs - Banner

All four of us played the fourth game of Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our Campaign using Tilly’s Very Bad Day, and set in the English Civil War. I was commander-in-chief for the Royalists, with Adam as the dashing cavalry commander. Jamie commanded for Parliament with Chris leading the infantry.

Summary: At the “Battle of Colchester”, in East Anglia, the Royalists smashed Parliament in 3 game turns. For the first time we saw the use of campaign cards on table and they were pivotal, although in a subtle way.

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1642 Game 3 – South-West – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-328 Round Head infantry bounce Cavaliers - Banner

Adam and Chris played the third game of Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our four player Campaign using Tilly’s Very Bad Day, and set in the English Civil War.

Summary: At the “Battle of Stratton”, the Royalists finally won a victory against Parliament.

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English Civil War Battles on the map for Populous, Rich and Rebellious

ECW Campaign - Map - With historical battles - Banner

Chris suggested I overlay the historical battles of the English Civil War on the campaign map for Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our English Civil War Campaign. So I did, although only for the the period covered by the campaign, i.e. the first civil war (1642-1646).

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1642 Game 2 – Wales – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-212 Royalist Pike+Shot looking good on the right - Banner

Jamie and I played the second game of Populous, Rich and Rebellious, our four player Campaign using Tilly’s Very Bad Day, and set in the English Civil War.

Summary: At the “Battle of Montgomery”, the defending Parliamentarians (Jamie) defeated the Royalists (Steven) in five game turns.

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1642 Game 1 – East Midlands – English Civil War Campaign

ECW-121 Royalists take a hammering - Banner

Adam, Chris and Jamie agreed to play Populous, Rich and Rebellious. As I hope you recall this is a Campaign set in the English Civil War. Chris, representing Parliament, invaded the East Midlands from London. The Royalists rose to the challenge and Adam tried to take it for the King.

Summary: At the “Battle of Ely”, the heavily outnumbered Parliamentarians defeated the Royalists in seven game turns.

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2023 Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian - Banner

So 2022 went okay. And now it is time to lay out my megalomaniac plans for 2023. I will try to tone them back a bit as, despite a lot of activity, I achieved depressingly few of my goals last year.

As usual I present this as a brain dump of my active projects, i.e. those all projects that are more or less “in progress”. The list is then split into three parts: likely in 2023, unlikely, and background activity.

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S12 Fighting Across the River – A Tilly’s Very Bad Day Battle Report 1

S12-101 Top view of table after deployment - Banner

I persuaded Adam and Chris to play my S12 Fighting Across the River Scenario for Tilly’s Very Bad Day. Although this is a generic scenario, the armies were from the Thirty Years War. Chris was the Blue player, the attacking Swedes. Adam was the defending Red player, with the Imperialists.

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Contested river crossings in the Seventeenth Century – Musing for Tilly’s Very Bad Day

Map of the Battle of Rain 1632-04-15 - Banner

Recently we play tested my S12 Fighting Across the River scenario for Tilly’s Very Bad Day (which I’ll post about soon). After the game Adam and I got to talking about the premise of the scenario and Adam encouraged me to take a closer look at some 17th century battles that feature a river crossing. In this post I look at four such battles and look for patterns in four factors: (1) crossing points; (2) forces present; (3) forces engaged; and (4) the battle result. The nature of the river crossings includes whether the river was fordable and how many crossings there were. A lot of men might have been nearby but only a minority were actively engaged, which suggests whether these battles were ‘nasty fights’ or ‘grand battles’. The result of battle is on the list because the defenders of a river crossings had a habit of ‘retreating once things get serious’.

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

Steven's History Bookcase - Banner

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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Steven’s Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth Army for Tilly’s Very Bad Day

Polish-109 Left Wing - Banner

Last year I collected a Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth Army for Tilly’s Very Bad Day. They are what got me interested in the Northern Wars. Actually it was the Gustavus Adolph’s campaigns against them that got me interested – he formed his military ideas in the Livonia fighting the Commonwealth before sailing to German for the Thirty Years War.

I thought I’d share some photos. Rather than have a separate painting guide I’ll give painting guidelines here.

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