Salute 2018 – Horse & Musket to Colonial

One of the outstanding gaming tables at Salute 2018 was built by Bill Gaskin & Friends – another highlight following 2016’s Battle of Wilhelmstadt. ‘Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation’ was set in 1761 and portrayed a fictional Spanish incursion into Florida.

Wooden ships in an estuary in tropical climate

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

Soldiers lining up after having landed in row boats

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

Units of soldiers marching inland under their banners from the river bank

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

A cart and wagon outside a colonial house

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

Red coated soldiers and irregulars marching through fields

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

View from behind a watchtower over open woodland with scattered troops

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

Some more atmospheric close up shots (no pun intended) by undeadhighelf.

Soldiers in blue uniforms shooting at soldiers in red behind a fence

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

Three cannons belching smoke

Raid at Gaskin’s Plantation by Bill Gaskin & Friends

The League of Gentlemen Anti-Alchemists sent Garibaldi’s Redshirts to rescue a beautifully constructed convent in the year 1860.

Convent with courtyard and church tower overlooking a village

The Biscotti War by The League of Gentlemen Anti-Alchemists

Troops in mostly red uniform jackets advancing towards small buildings

The Biscotti War by The League of Gentlemen Anti-Alchemists

View into the convent's courtyard garden from above

The Biscotti War by The League of Gentlemen Anti-Alchemists

A rustic house with red roof tiles

The Biscotti War by The League of Gentlemen Anti-Alchemists

Dalauppror presented the Battle of Stäket, which took place on 13th August 1719 during the Great Northern War and pitched Russians versus Swedes. The scenario was played out using The Pikeman’s Lament set of rules.

Costal landscape with wooden ships on shore

Battle of Stäket by Dalauppror

A small settlement and tents set up along the shore

Battle of Stäket by Dalauppror

Troops amongst blazing buildings and firing from prepared positions on either side of a river

Battle of Stäket by Dalauppror

The hypothetical ‘Battle of Freeman’s Farm’ during the American War of Independence in 1777 was staged by the Essex Warriors.

Column of troops with a cannon passing by a farmhouse

Battle of Freeman’s Farm by Essex Warriors

Lines of troops advancing over green fields

Battle of Freeman’s Farm by Essex Warriors

Further games within the wider era ranged from Napoleonic to British colonials in India.

Units of soldiers on hex terrain surrounding a small town

Battle of Aspern-Essling 1809 by The Old Guard

Massed units of troops marching towards a house

Battle of Aspern-Essling 1809 by The Old Guard

An army storming over a hill

A Napoleonic battle fought using General d’Armee rules

City walls in arid terrain manned by soldiers

Indian Mutiny Escape by The Sons of Simon de Montford

Salute 2018 – ECW & Age of Piracy

It seems like the Golden Age of Piracy is upon us thanks to Blood & Plunder, a game I am very keen to get involved in. At Salute 2018, the Leicester Phat Cats did a marvellous job of showcasing the system on a board filled with ships and a coastal settlement.

Five sailing ships close to a beach with a rustic settlement

Blood & Plunder by Leicester Phat Cats

Boarding action between two sailing ships

Blood & Plunder by Leicester Phat Cats

Two boats filled with pirates landing on a beach

Blood & Plunder by Leicester Phat Cats

Early colonial settlement with a market square

Blood & Plunder by Leicester Phat Cats

Maps and documents relating to pirates in the 17th century

Blood & Plunder by Leicester Phat Cats

The Tin Soldiers of Antwerp ran a family friendly participation game in which ‘The Swiss Family Robinson’ had to defend their tree house against waves of attacking pirates.

Beach with marked up movement squares leading up to a jungle settlement

The Swiss Family Robinson by Tin Soldiers of Antwerp

Groups of pirates moving up the beach towards a treehouse

The Swiss Family Robinson by Tin Soldiers of Antwerp

TGCM had brought an imposing pirate vessel to show off their miniatures range.

Pirate ship model with three masts and purple sails

Fantasy pirate vessel by TGCM

A few years earlier and back on dry land, Simon Miller & Friends staged a fictional English Civil War battle in the Borsetshire hamlet of Soggy Bottom. Not being content with just one engagement, this was played in two different scales, using the ‘To the Strongest! For King and Parliament’ set of rules.

Cavalry units charging at each other over open ground

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Blocks of infantry defending houses surrounded by low walls

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Musket armed soldiers in a field with sheep

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Infantry with pikes and muskets advancing towards a wood

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Birds eye view of a large battlefield with ranks of soldiers approaching each other

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Small settlement occupied by large bodies of troops

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Two cavalry units attacking each other

Battle of Soggy Bottom 1643 by Simon Miller & Friends

Salute 2018 – World War 2

World War 2 with its plethora of rules systems and miniatures ranges was a popular topic again at Salute 2018.

‘The Battle of Foy’ and its portrayal in Band of Brothers was the setting for a winter engagement using Bolt Action rules.

View over a snow covered forest towards a small town

The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action

Infantry advancing from woods into open fields covered in snow

The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action

Outskirts of a town in winter with tanks on the streets

The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action

Tanks on a street outside a church

The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action

Infantry in winter gear occupying a house ruin and trench

The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action

A Few Brits and the Hobby built an impressive table for ‘Operation Taifun – The Battle for Leros 1943’. The game was played using Battlegroup rules with the Torch supplement.

Coastline with a warship, fighter plane and infantry making landfall

Operation Taifun by A Few Brits and the Hobby

Warship moored at a small jetty with infantry disembarking

Operation Taifun by A Few Brits and the Hobby

Infantry advancing over rough ground with scattered bombed out buildings

Operation Taifun by A Few Brits and the Hobby

Also using Battlegroup Torch were Ironfist Publishing themselves with their battle in Tunisia of 1943 to take Kasserine Pass. Thanks to undeadhighelf for the additional photography.

North African settlement surrounded by desert and some irrigated fields and palm trees

Taking the Kasserine Pass for Battlegroup by Ironfist Publishing

Military vehicles and soldiers in terrain around a settlement

Taking the Kasserine Pass by Ironfist Publishing

Small town with white adobe buildings and a minaret

Taking the Kasserine Pass by Ironfist Publishing

Warlord Games’ Blood Red Skies was used to simulate an attack on an aircraft carrier during the battle of the Philippine Sea in ‘Sink the Hornet’.

Model of an aircraft carrier with planes on deck and over the surrounding sea

Sink the Hornet by Warlord Games

Several squadrons of fighter aircraft over open water

Sink the Hornet by Warlord Games

‘Seagull Day’ was set in the alternative timeline of A Very British Civil War in 1937 and brought to the table by the Gentlemen’s Wargames Parlour.

Display boards with historical posters and memorabilia

Seagull Day by Gentlemen’s Wargames Parlour

A small airfield with biplanes

Seagull Day by Gentlemen’s Wargames Parlour

The ‘Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright’ participation games by Crawley Wargames Club had multiple T-34s trying to corner and destroy a Tiger tank.

Damaged industrial buildings and train tracks with tanks moving in between

Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright by Crawley Wargames Club

Abbey Wood Irregulars staged a battle during the Normandy campaign using Mission Command rules.

Top down view of a road leading through fields and hedgerows with tanks moving around

Mission Command Normandy by Abbey Wood Irregulars

Salute 2018 – World War 1

The theme for Salute 2018 was World War 1 and there were a number of tables recreating events from its history.

Maidstone Wargames Society built the cruiser Vindictive and the mole for the raid on Zeebrugge in 1918.

Cruiser moored at a harbour wall

The Storming of Zeebrugge by Maidstone Wargames Society

View down the mole with its defence guns

The Storming of Zeebrugge by Maidstone Wargames Society

Gun crews on the cruiser

The Storming of Zeebrugge by Maidstone Wargames Society

Meanwhile, the Naval Wargames Society used a smaller scale to capture the ship action leading up to the landing.

Zeebrugge harbour entrance with war ships approaching

The Zeebrugge Raid by The Naval Wargames Society

Scarab Miniatures also set their scenario during the final year of the war, with the French and British engaging in a push against the German lines.

Tanks and infantry advancing onto trenches and barbed wire lines

1918 Zero Hour by Scarab Miniatures

Infantry emerging from ruined buildings past two burning tanks

1918 Zero Hour by Scarab Miniatures

1914 was the year of Great Escape Games’ battle between brigade sized forces on the plains of Holland (I assume, due to the windmill).

Cavalry and infantry advancing over open fields with a windmill in the foreground

1914 by Great Escape Games

A river running through fields with farmsteads occupied by soldiers

1914 by Great Escape Games

Southbourne Tabletop and Boardgamers (I believe, the records are sketchy) took the fighting to East Africa in 1914.

Small supply camp in tropical vegetation

East Africa 1914 by Southbourne Tabletop and Boardgamers

Ruined factory building in the jungle

East Africa 1914 by Southbourne Tabletop and Boardgamers

Lake Tanganika was the setting for several simultaneous naval battles fought out by Peterborough Wargames Society.

African houses on an outcrop of land by a large blue lake

Battles for Lake Tanganika by Peterborough Wargames Society

Wings of Glory Aerodrome UK meanwhile took to the skies with dogfights both in the WW1 and WW2 eras.

Aerial view of a battlefield with planes and air defence balloons amongst clouds

Wings of Glory Aerodrome UK

And finally, there was also a life sized World War 1 tank on display in the hall. I can’t tell the marks apart, so I shall just leave this here.

World War 1 tank

World War 1 tank

Interior of World War 1 tank

Interior of World War 1 tank

Salute 2018 – Ancients & Dark Ages

Since I am working on Achaemenid Persians at the moment, I was pleased to see several battles from the era reenacted on the tabletop at Salute 2018.

Newbury & Reading Wargames Society staged the Battle of Ipsus in 301 BC during the wars of Alexander’s succession.

Two battle lines facing off with pikes, cavalry, chariots and elephants

Battle of Ipsus by Newbury & Reading Wargames Society

Pike formation with skirmishing screen

Battle of Ipsus by Newbury & Reading Wargames Society

War elephants with archer support

Battle of Ipsus by Newbury & Reading Wargames Society

The Battle of Paraitakene in 317 BC between the forces of Antigonus and Eumenes was fought out by the Society of Ancients.

Army of infantry, cavalry and war elephants marching towards the enemy line

Battle of Paraitakene by Society of Ancients

View from behind pike formations towards the opposing army

Battle of Paraitakene by Society of Ancients

War elephant spearheading a cavalry charge

Battle of Paraitakene by Society of Ancients

Donnington Miniatures were fielding Macedonian era troops as well in their demo game for Mortem et Gloriam.

Macedonian cavalry and infantry advancing towards massed enemy lines

Mortem et Gloriam at Salute 2018

The starter set for Gangs of Rome was available on the day and there were some demo games held to introduce new players.

Roman city scape with small arena in the corner

Gangs of Rome at Salute 2018

Wargames Illustrated put on ‘Druid’, seeing Celtic warriors do battle in a semi-mystical setting.

Ancient landscape with a river and bridge, woods and a village protected by wooden palisades

Druid by Wargames Illustrated

Large wicker man in front of a wooden village

Druid by Wargames Illustrated

Celtic warriors advancing towards a wooden watchtower

Druid by Wargames Illustrated

View through trees onto a group of riders passing by a wooden palisade

Druid by Wargames Illustrated

Several demo tables for Saga were obligatory, here a dark age fight in full swing captured by undeadhighelf.

Groups of dark age warriors fighting through a hamlet

Saga at Salute 2018

Persian Skirmishers

About 20 years ago, my Achaemenid Persians unleashed their invasion forces onto Greece, regularly facing off and being soundly repulsed by two Spartan and Athenian generals. In other words, history repeated itself.

Back then we played using the first edition of Warhammer Ancient Battles. Years later, while rarely playing or collecting historical armies, I bought Osprey’s Field of Glory, mainly to browse through the artwork and photography. Seeing as I recently felt inspired to continue work on the Achaemenids, I decided to organise them according to Field of Glory army lists and conventions. This mainly means grouping them into 80mm wide ‘bases’ (60mm is the default but I will mostly likely only ever field them against other armies of mine using the same standard) of 4 infantry or 3 cavalry.

The main reason I am revisiting the Achaemenid Persians is for painting though. The army has some paint on all the units I used to field, some being essentially finished yet quite basic, others only based with one or two main colours on.

The draw for any army of ancient Persia is surely the riot of colours and patterns in their dress, so I picked some of the initially completed figures, added some highlights and painted more patterns onto their tunics and trousers.

Four Persian archers in colourfully patterned tunics and trousers

Archers are the mainstay of the Persian army

For the horse archers, I gave the mounts a spattering of white markings. Otherwise, I think their dark reddish brown is a nice backdrop for the bright riders. So that’s 10 down and about 100 left to go to really complete the army. I think Greece can rest easy for the moment, while the King of Kings marshals his forces.

Six archers on horseback in front of an infantry battle line

Horse archers are deadly foes over open ground

Side view of three Persian horse archers in colourful tunics and trousers

Light horse forms a skirmish screen

Three colourfully dressed horse archers

Off to harass the enemy