Monday, December 14, 2015

Larry Brom Tribute Game

At the November CMH club meeting, Terry Shockey put on a Larry Brom tribute The Sword and the Flame game.  It was a good ole Zulu War scenario.  It was a fun tribute game!

Here are pictures from the game:

Zulus advancing towards British line.


Zulu right horn attacks.

Zulu right horn and center attack.

British cavalry come to the rescue of the British right flank.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Sword and The Flame by Larry Brom

Today I learned that Larry Brom, the creator of The Sword and The Flame (TSATF) rules has died.  I am sad to hear this news because Larry was the reason historical miniature wargaming became my main hobby.  Thirty years ago this year I was introduced to The Sword and the Flame rules from my Dad's coworkers son.  He setup a small Zulu war scenario and we ended up playing it twice in one sitting.  It captured my interest and I was off into the hobby.  Larry was able to capture the fun and the history in the rules.

TSATF Zulu War game I ran back in 1997.  Pretty basic, but I was pretty green back then.

Canadian Lancaster Bomber

I just watched this video of the Canadian Lancaster Bomber.  Back in c. 1995 I saw this bomber fly over the Canadian Parliament buildings at night.  They were shining fake search lights at it.  I believe it was for the anniversary of the end of WWII.  When I visited the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum years ago, I don't think it was there at the time, but I definitely enjoyed the museum.

This video is very cool.

Sunday, November 1, 2015


I am currently painting up 25mm Aztecs, other natives and Conquistadors.  These will be used for a future The Sword and Flame game.  I think the rules will work out fine, but have yet to test it.

Notice I said 25mm.  Yes, I am painting up 25mm not 28mm.  I acquired free a bunch of 25mm Monday Knight Production miniatures from their Gold and Feathers line.  In future posts I will show the Aztecs and Conquistador Allies 25mm figures.  I think there are more options in 28mm, but I prefer to work with what I have.

I would be interested to read in the comments who else my Spanish could skirmish with back in Europe.  I do not know the history of Spain in this period in Europe.  I am slowly learning about the Conquistadors.

I hope to put on a fun game in the future.  At least something different.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Oldest Book in My Collection

I was inspired by another blog I stumbled upon that had a post showing their oldest military related book in their collection.  This evening I gave my book shelves a browse and discovered my oldest book is really not that old.  It is from 1922.

The book is titled Q-Ships and Their Story, by Edward Keble Chatterton.  The author in World War One joined the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve and later commanded a Motor Launch flotilla.  He seems to have written a number of books after the war.

I read this book many years ago, but I do remember that it is a good book.

Illustration List


Monday, August 31, 2015

First Battle of Gaza Table

Progress has slowed down on my First Battle of Gaza, WWI scenario.  I have painted up all the miniatures for the game, and I am down to just testing the scenario/rules and finishing the terrain.  In the pictures below you will see the layout with no armies and with hidden movement bases.

I am not happy with the sand dunes at the bottom of the photo.  I'll have to come up with something different.  The palm trees, buildings, rail, hills, cactus hedges and wadi came out not too shabby.  The cactus hedges are on two sides of Gaza.  Note that any Turkish trenches are not visible.  These get placed once certain movement bases are made visible.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Historic Gettysburg Photos Documentary

I stumbled across this interesting four part documentary (~1999) on William Frassanito researching the locations of where exactly the Gettysburg photos were taken.

I think it means more to me that I have gamed parts of the battle, watched the movie Gettsyburg and walked the battlefield.  I actually missed seeing the Gettysburg Sniper's Nest while walking very near there...woops.

Part 1 - 15min

Part 2 - 15min
Part 3 - 15min
Part 4 - 6min 47sec

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Battle of Waterloo at CMH

Last weekend our club put on a 25mm Battle of Waterloo game that ran for two days using the Column, Line and Square rules.  Setup took place Friday night, then the game ran all day Saturday and finished Sunday afternoon.

Some statistics from the game:

Figures: 1468 French, 1261 Anglo-allied and 767 Prussians
Grand total: over 3500

The whole wargaming surface was covered with teddy bear fur grass terrain style.

I was not involved in the game, but gladly chatted with everyone and took pictures.  It looked like a fun game and it appeared the battle was playing out differently from the historic battle.

Overview video from Saturday

Sunday slideshow photos

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Why Join the Historical Miniature Wargaming Hobby?

Recently this question came to mind while thinking about the opposite to why someone would leave the Historical Miniature Wargaming hobby.  I know many people who enjoy this hobby just like me, but why should someone join in the hobby?

For myself, I guess I think back to when I was thirteen when I can say I officially started in the hobby when I was introduced to The Sword and Flame rules playing back to back Zulu War battles.  I was hooked.

Here are some thoughts on why start into the Historical Miniature Wargaming hobby:

  • If you enjoy painting historical miniatures or models then this is the hobby for you.  Rather than just have planes hang from the ceiling just collecting dust, these planes can move around the table shooting down other planes.  Model tanks painted up to run on flat beds in a model train table can now drive anywhere on the table firing away, with all sorts of vehicles on fire.  You get to paint all sorts of miniatures/models.  You can also paint in any scale you want within certain range bands for land, air or naval miniatures.
  • Gaming is a main component of the hobby.  If you enjoy gaming with friends or meet new people, there are lots of opportunities to game.  You can go to conventions, local clubs, or meet-ups.  If you don't want to game with other people, you can just do solo gaming.  Before I discovered a local club, I did a lot of solo gaming and enjoyed it.  On the other hand gaming with other people is a great way to meet new opponent and some or many may become friends.
  • Do you enjoy military history?  This hobby has lots of opportunities to learn more about all sorts of aspects of military history.  I would probably be still stuck reading about WWII if I had not got into the hobby.  I've learned so much more and discovered I enjoy learning about different periods.  I still enjoy WWII, but wow, the hobby has opened my eyes.  Fellow people in the hobby enjoy showing you their period and enjoy answering your questions.  Even if you don't know anything about a period, you don't have to feel intimidated on the game table, the games are for fun.  If you don't have fun, try a different game.  You can share your military history knowledge via club newsletter articles, a blog, or during a game you run.
  • As mentioned earlier, the hobby is a great way to meet people who share your enjoyment either for painting, gaming or military history.  I guess for me it is gaming and military history.  I think the way to go is to join in a local gaming club, hopefully a Historical Miniature Wargaming club, that way you are not distracted by non-historical miniature gaming or board games.  Over the years I've been lucky to belong to three different clubs.  I highly recommend it.  You may not get along with everyone, but there are definitely others there that you will enjoy.
Any single choice above is a good reason to get in the hobby.  If you can check off all four above, there is no reason you should not be in the hobby.

In this day-in-age there are many choices in what you can do as a hobby.  Certainly computer gaming is the easiest, but Historical Miniature Wargaming is great fun.  To be in the hobby, you don't have to own any miniatures or paint any, you can just show up and enjoy the games other people put on.  There is always a need for more gamers around the tables.

Are you considering getting into the hobby or just want to sample it?  Feel free to contact me for advice (eegist at

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Australia, New Zealand, Gallipoli and Peter Jackson

Lately I have seen a lot of interest in the Australia and New Zealand involvement in WWI.  I am still painting up both sides of the conflict in the middle east in WWI, of which Aussies and Kiwis are in the mix.

My take on the media (movies/books) coverage of Australia and New Zealand involvement in WWI focuses heavily on the Gallipoli campaign.  This is a Canadian writing this, so maybe those living in Australia and New Zealand have better coverage.  What is their full involvement in WWI?  Yes Gallipoli, but New Guinea, Egypt, Palestine, Mesopotamia and on the Western Front.

There are always some sort of Gallipoli book in the book stores.  I've seen an amazing Gallipoli wargame terrain layout online video from the Salute 2011 convention.  Various Gallipoli movies are out there.  What about Egypt and Palestine?  I contend that Gallipoli has some sort of mystique, but in reality was an amphibious landing, stalemate and pull out.  To me, ended up the same warfare as the Western Front.  The post Gallipoli ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) in Egypt and Palestine is more interesting.

So back to the interest in the Australia and New Zealand in Mediterranean WWI lately.  Here are some recent things I have come across.

Link to description of project

Peter Jackson, of Lord of the Rings fame, with the Perry Brothers working on Gallipoli Diorama (c. March 2015).
Blog link

The movie The Water Diviner has Gallipoli in it.

I guess I fall in this category as well.  These are my 10mm Turkish infantry.Artillery still to come.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

San Diego 2015

My wife and I decided to take a short trip to San Diego.  We had a great time with great weather (about 90F/30C).

The first day we took in the harbour sights.  I have been to the area before, but I enjoy San Diego.  We skipped the USS Midway aircraft carrier, which I've been on before so didn't mind.  We did tour the ships at the Maritime Museum.  The Soviet submarine is fun to walk/crawl through.  We also took a 2 hour harbour tour where you get to see up closer the U.S. modern navy and naval base.  Lots of activity when we were there.  Below are a small selection of ships we saw in San Diego bay.

HMS Surprise, used in Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World movie.

B-39 Soviet submarine.  I saw her in Vancouver in 1998.

Swift Boat, PCF-816.  Not open when we were there.
USS Midway (foreground) and USS Ronald Reagan (background)

USS America (LHA-6) arriving

Harbour Tour Photos below

USS New Orleans (LPD-18) arriving
F/A-18s, probably from USS Ronald Reagan
Boeing E-3 Sentry (AWACS) just landed
USS Ronald Reagan

USS Boxer (LHD-4), USS Kidd (DDG-100)? (K100?), and USS William P. Lawrence (DDG-110)

USS Peleliu (LHA-5)
USS Chancellorsville (CG-62) and USS Essex (LHD-2)
Independence-class littoral combat ship
USS Spruance (DDG-111) arriving
HSV Sea Slice is an experimental United States Navy vessel, built by Lockheed Martin.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Second Battle of Buron

At Genghis Con this year I ran a Blitzkrieg-Commander II rules scenario "Second Battle of Buron."  The battle took place July 8, 1944 between Canadians and Germans in Normandy.

I had playtested the scenario a number of times and the Canadians won each time.  At the convention the Germans won.  They won by poor rolls by the Canadian players basically resulting in the Canadian infantry stuck in the open in front of the defenses.  There were also about 5 Canadian blunder rolls in the game.  The Canadians failed their breakpoint morale and retreated on turn 8 (12 turn game).

Historically the Canadians won the battle.

Canadian artillery provides a smoke screen at the start of the battle.
Canadian forces:

1 CO (9)
4 HQ (8)
1 FAO (8)

3 Universal Carriers
13 Infantry (reg)
1 6pdr
1 Engineer
1 3" Mortar
5 Piat (upgrade)
3 Sherman
1 Sherman Firefly
1 Churchill AVRE Fascine
1 Sherman Crab
1 M10 tank destroyer
2 M7 Priest 105mm
2 HE Assets
2 Smoke Assets

About mid way through the game (c. turn 4)
German forces:

1 CO (9)
2 HQ (8)
1 Pz HQ (8)
1 FAO (7)

6 Infantry (HJ)
2 Panzerfaust
1 8cm Mortar
1 75mm AT gun
1 Grille Sig 33
2 Pz IV
6 barbed wire
4 AT ditches
12 trenches
2 mines (real)
2 mines (dummy)
1 gun pit (AT gun)
3 dug-outs

1 105mm guns
1 150mm Nebelwerfer

Both sides heavily engaged about turn 6.

Battlefield at the end of the battle looking from the Canadian side.

End game, Canadian tanks flanking the German defenses.
Canadian infantry have a hard time of it in the center.
Canadians make it as far as the German anti-tank ditch.
German nebelwerfers caused high infantry casualties.
View from German held Buron at the end of the game.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Egyptian Expeditionary Force 1917: Pendraken 10mm

Here is a sample of some of the stands for the Egyptian Expeditionary Force in 1917 that I am painting up for (at least) battles in Palestine.  Labels show unit they belong to and info for Big Table: Little Men rules.

L to R: British 18pdr and Australian Light Horse
L to R: British Infantry and British Cavalry