My Personal World of Wargaming

As of 02-05-16

Although I am passionately interested in wargaming the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, which I blog about at In Red-coat Rags Attired, I started this blog, Leaden Ships and Tin Men, as a place to document various other wargaming interests. At the moment these includes the Anglo/Dutch naval wars of the seventeenth century (in 1/2400) and quite probably the Franco/Prussian War (in 10mm).

I am also working out a fantasy war,set in an alternate history Cornwall of the fifteenth century, which has its own blog, Signa et Portenta.

Since I am a solo wargamer, I have to paint everything, setup everything, figure out rule adaptations, and then play both (or more) sides. It is at times a schizophrenic existence and often moves at a near glacial pace. If you happen to be in the same wargaming situation I highly recommend the Lone Warrior the excellent journal of the Solo Wargamers Association.

Update 02-05-17

I am currently working with the One Hour Wargames rules and scenarios by Niel Thomas. The “OHW” that appears frequently in the newer posts below is the abbreviation I use for them.

Update 03-14-17

In addition to OHW I have now added Hordes of the Things (here after referred to as HOTT) to my repertoire of small space, quick play rules.

Additional HOTT Elements

I am rather enjoying the quick building of a couple of HOTT armies from my favorite wargaming period, the British Civil Wars. The objective in doing this is to learn and experiment will HOTT before building my own army list(s) for Jack Vance’s The Dragon Masters.

The 17th c. BCW lists in HOTT 2.1 are well conceived and since I want to work with as many element types as possible, I have now also added all the supplemental types provided:

The Blades on the left, as part of the Seaforth foot at the Battle of Auldearn, were a group of mainly Clan MacClennan warriors who guarded the MacKenzie banner. Standing their ground when all others had fled, they were offered quarter by the Royalist Gordons. They refused and died to the man, earning their memorial name, “The Bannermen of Kintail”.

On the right is a Lurker element comprised of men from the  mountain villages of Atholl. Although they were called out as fencibles by the Covenanter government, their sympathies lay with Montrose, and the scamped the call. While they were not particularly interested in joining Montrose’s army they brought out their muster weapons to harass the government where feasible.

Below, an extra Horde element has been added to both armies:

For Montrose, is a rugged bunch of camp followers. In the front is a Barber/Surgeon/Herbalist whose skills are considered “better than nothing”. He has  dragooned two of the euphemistically called soldier’s “wives” to carry his equipment and assist if necessary.

To the rear is the chief launderess. So valuable is the availability of clean linen while on campaign, she is a person of great worth and is guarded by two drovers from the baggage train.

For the Covenanter’s Horde is a group of townsfolk come to watch a battle (as happened at Tippermuir and likely Aberdeen). The elderly man in the lead served in Ireland under Mountjoy and fought at Kinsale. Now in his seventies, his memory being faulty, he wishes to see, “one more battle”. He is escorted by his two (armed) granddaughters, themselves veterans of many skirmishes having fought off swarms of would-be Lotharios who were intent on having the maids’ virtue for a prize.

To the rear is a rich merchant accompanied by his young, and rather bored wife. Fancying himself a tactician, he plans to impress her with his keen observations. A young stable boy (to his wife’s delight) protects the couple with his pitchfork.

The last two elements from the supplemental list are shown below:

For the Covenanters, on the left, is Duncan Forbes, late a captain in the service of Sweden. As a fiery lay preacher he once exhorted his soldiers non-stop for seven hours on the evils of drink and gambling (ultimately driving many into a state of torpor). Now a full minister of the Kirk he is assigned to the Covenanter Army to tend to the souls of the common soldiers.

A man of many contradictions, he wears his stout buff coat over his suit of black with (surprisingly) white Geneva  collar bands. Comfortable with either scripture or weapons he has strapped on his good broadsword which has sent many a papist to the fires of perdition! In his left hand he holds a heavy, iron bound Scripture (said to have briefly passed through the hands of John Knox himself). The Bible too is a formidable weapon if thrown with good aim! (For as any good Presbyterian knows, no object should become an idol!). To remind all that he too was a soldier (and not one of those dilettante professors at St Andrews) he wears his officer’s sash from the Swedish Army. He may be used as either a Cleric or a Cleric Hero.

While there were likely many Duncan Forbes at the time, none were this worthy.

To the right, typed as Beasts, is a group MacDonald raiders from Glencoe. Allies of Montrose, they are shown somewhat what larger than life, no doubt as the were portrayed to the small Campbell children who wouldn’t eat their porridge!

Finally, since I wanted to also learn how to use Aerials, I cast about for an example and settled on this:

It is said that Alasdair Macolla was near seven feet tall and a fierce warrior for the “old Religion”. He is often credited with the innovation (or perhaps regularization) of the “Highland Charge”.  IMHO he near single -handedly won the Battle of Auldearn, for which he was knighted by the Marquis of Montrose.

It is said that when Lord Antrim and the Confederation were looking for one to lead the Irish Brigade to Scotland, warrior cheftains were gathered together. The question was posed, who among you has the strongest arm? MacColla raised his right arm. No one objected. The question was then posed, who among you is second strongest ? MacColla raised his left arm and again there where no objections voiced.

It is said that when MacColla placed his foot on Scottish soil (at the head of the Irish Brigade) in 1644, the sound of a great explosion was heard across the length and breadth of Scotland. The Catholics of the Highlands took this to be the sign that the “Wrath of God” was at hand and would deliver them from the Protestant heretics. MacColla went on to earn the appellation, “The Devastator” (or as Stevenson has it, “The Destroyer of Houses”).

All of this seems justification for the purposes of HOTT to accord MacColla a near demigod status and type him as an Aerial Hero. This status aside, his mortality was amply confirmed at the the Battle of Knocknanuss in Ireland (1647) where he was killed leading his MacDonald Warriors against the Protestants.

Now I shall get to playing.