Sunday, 24 September 2023

Nugget 356

The editor of THE NUGGET sent me the latest issue on Saturday, and I will be sending it to the printer on Monday morning. I hope that it will be ready to be posted out to members by the end of the week.

IMPORTANT: Please note that this is the second issue of THE NUGGET to be published for the 2023-2024 subscription year.

If you have not yet re-subscribed, an email reminder was sent to you some time ago with the relevant information you require to do so. If you have lost this and wish to re-subscribe or you are a new subscriber, please request a PayPal invoice or the bank transfer information from the Treasurer or follow the instructions on the relevant page of the website.

Friday, 22 September 2023

AIChat defines The Portable Wargame

Whilst I was waiting for my radiotherapy session yesterday, I decided to ‘ask’ AIChat what it knew about THE PORTABLE WARGAME, and this is what it ‘wrote’:

The Portable Wargame is a set of rules for tabletop wargaming that was developed by Bob Cordery, a well-known wargame designer. This rule set is designed to be versatile and portable, allowing players to easily set up and play wargames with minimal equipment.

The Portable Wargame is unique in that it uses gridded terrain and bases representing units rather than traditional miniature figures. This simplifies gameplay and makes it easier for players to create their custom battles. The rules themselves provide a good balance between realism and playability, allowing for tactical decision-making and strategic planning.

One of the key features of The Portable Wargame is its flexibility. It can be easily adapted to different historical periods, from ancient battles to modern conflicts. Additionally, the rules can accommodate both large-scale battles and smaller skirmishes, making it suitable for a variety of tabletop wargaming preferences.

Another benefit of The Portable Wargame is its portability, as the name suggests. The rules are intentionally designed to be played on smaller playing surfaces, such as a standard-sized table or even a smaller board. This makes it easier to set up and play games in different locations, making it a great option for gamers who may not have access to a large dedicated gaming space.

Overall, The Portable Wargame is a versatile and accessible rule set that provides the opportunity for engaging and tactical wargaming experiences. Whether you're a seasoned wargamer or just starting out, this ruleset offers a great way to enjoy tabletop battles.

This is not a bad synopsis of the concept, and better than I would have expected.

Tuesday, 19 September 2023

I have been to … St George’s Garrison Church, Woolwich

On Sunday afternoon, Sue and I went to St George’s Garrison Church, Woolwich, to attend the Commonwealth & Gurkha Garden fundraising afternoon cream tea.

The church served as the Woolwich garrison’s church until it was hit by a V1 on 13th July 1944. The building caught fire and the roof fell in, and once the site was secured and a temporary roof was erected, the building remained unused. During the 1950s and 1960s the building was neglected and vandalised. The upper parts of the walls were demolished in 1970 and a canopy was erected over the apse to protect the area around the altar. In the same year a memorial garden was created onsite.

In 1973 the building was listed, and in 2011 it was handed over to the Heritage of London Trust, who obtained a match-funded grant of £400,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund for £800,000 of conservation work that included the building a large canopy roof over the eastern end of the church.

Since 2016 the church has been run by a local group, the Woolwich Garrison Church Trust, and as part of their continued development of the site, they are raising money to have an accessible Commonwealth & Gurkha Garden built next to the building. Woolwich and Plumstead have the largest Gurkha community in the UK and they have given lots of financial support to this project, and Sunday’s event was part of the ongoing fundraising efforts.

The plan of the Commonwealth and Gurkha Garden. The design has been produced by Juliet Sargeant, an award-winning garden designer.

Despite the threat of rain, there was a good turnout, and the afternoon tea was excellent. We arrived just after 3.00pm and stayed until 5.00pm. During our stay I took several photographs and we both spoke to the chair of the Woolwich Garrison Church Trust, Tim Barnes KC, about the possibility of us giving the trust a donation.

The uncovered part of the church has been laid out as a garden, and is regularly used for all sorts of events and functions.
The food tent attracted lots of attention ... and the cream tea that was available was superb.
Due to the inclement weather, most attendees sat at tables in the covered area near to the altar..
A display of artist's impressions of the new Commonwealth & Gurkha Garden was placed in front of the altar.
Above the altar is a mosaic depicting the church's patron saint, St George. On either side of the mosaic are plaques showing the names of the members of the Royal Artillery and Indian Artillery who won the Victoria Cross ...
... from 1854 to 1864 ...
... and from 1880 to 1945.

Monday, 18 September 2023

Fifteen years on ...

Fifteen years ago I wrote the first blog post on my newly-minted blog. It stated that:

After much prompting ... and not a little reluctance on my part ... I have decided to take the plunge.

I have now joined the world of the self-publicising, self-centred, self-indulgent blogger.

I intend to share my thoughts on wargaming (and other related matters that crop up) with a wider audience ... probably much to the relief of my wife and wargaming colleagues. So watch this space ... and come prepared to be bored!

Over the past fifteen years I have written well over five thousand blog posts, my blog has been visited more than four and a half million times, and there have been in excess of forty thousand comments ... and blogging has enriched my wargaming in more ways that I can count! It has put me in contact with numerous wargamers from across the globe who I may well never have met – and will probably never meet – whose ideas, feedback, and encouragement have enriched my enjoyment of wargaming To them I say a heartfelt ...


PS. I hope that I haven't been too much of a self-publicising, self-centred, self-indulgent blogger, and that I've never been too boring!

Sunday, 17 September 2023

Military History Plus bonus podcast

On Tuesday Professor Gary Sheffield announced on Twitter that there was going to be a bonus Military History Plus podcast released on Wednesday. (I know that Twitter is now called ‘X’, but it sounds silly saying that I’m reading a tweet on ‘X’.)

The bonus podcast featured the Irish military historian and writer Gerry White talking about Irish history from 1913 to 1922. The discussions covered Home Rule, the First World War, the Easter Rising, the Irish War of Independence/Anglo-Irish War, and the Irish Civil War.

This was yet another excellent podcast and I am pleased that Professor Gary Sheffield and Dr Spencer Jones decided to produce this extras podcast.

Friday, 15 September 2023

Warships of the Soviet Fleets 1939-1945

Back in March I reviewed the first two volumes of this three-part study of the WARSHIPS OFTHE SOVIET FLEETS 1939-1945.

The third part deals with Naval Auxiliaries and includes the following chapters:

  • Staff & communications ships and boats
  • Dispatch ships
  • Survey vessels
  • Salvage vessels
  • Depot ships
  • Training ships
  • Sanitary transport ships
  • Icebreakers
  • Transport ships
  • Oilers
  • Water carriers
  • Tugs
  • Experimental and special purpose vessels
  • Cable layers
  • Harbour vessels
  • Ex-enemy ships acquired after the end of hostilities
  • Armament and sensors
  • Project numbers
  • Enemy losses of warships inflicted by ships of the Soviet Navy
  • Afterword
  • Alterations & Additions
  • Future updates

I have several other books that deal with the vessels used by the Soviet Navy during World War II, but these three volumes are by far the most extensive in their coverage. The line drawings are very useful, and the writers have tried to find photographs of as many of the vessels covered in these books as possible.

The chapter that covers the armament and sensors carried by Soviet Navy warships covers everything from the heavy guns that were designed to arm the never-completed 1930s battleships to the light machine guns carried by motor torpedo boats. It also covers:

  • Torpedo weapons
  • Anti-submarine weapons
  • Rockets
  • Mine warfare
  • Sensors

This last section really helps the reader to understand the ship specifications featured in this series.

I thoroughly recommend these three volumes to anyone who has an interest in the development of and role of the Soviet Navy during the Great Patriotic War.

WARSHIPS OF THE SOVIET FLEETS 1939–1945: VOLUME III: NAVAL AUXILLIARIES was written by Przemyslaw Budzbon, Marek Twardowski, and Jan Radziemski, and published by Seaforth Publishing in 2023 (ISBN 978 1 3990 2281 1).

Monday, 11 September 2023

Seven sessions done; thirty sessions left

This afternoon I will be undertaking my eighth session of radiotherapy … which will mean that I will be a fifth of the way through my treatment.

It has not been easy to achieve the right level of hydration during the recent hot spell, but as I’ve got into the rhythm of my daily treatment, I’ve learned how to pace my water intake so that I’ve got the right amount of fluid in my system at the right time.

So far, I haven’t noticed any side effects, but I’m told that they may well not appear until after the radiotherapy has ended.

Sunday, 10 September 2023

Nugget 355

I collected the latest issue of THE NUGGET from our printer – Macaulay Scott Printing Company of Welling, Kent – yesterday, and I hope to be able to post it out to members on Monday.

Due to the webmaster being away from home at present and therefore unable to update the website, members cannot yet read this issue online. However, I hope to send it as an email attachment to all e-members as soon as I can.

IMPORTANT: Please note that this is the first issue of THE NUGGET to be published for the 2023-2024 subscription year.

If you have not yet re-subscribed, an email reminder was sent to you some time ago with the relevant information you require to do so. If you have lost this and wish to re-subscribe or you are a new subscriber, please request a PayPal invoice or the bank transfer information from the Treasurer or follow the instructions on the relevant page of the website.

Friday, 8 September 2023

A flocking progress report: The Germans and Axis troops and equipment

I have now had the opportunity to photograph the German and Axis figures and vehicles that I have renovated, rebased, and flocked with cork granules, and here they are:

Wednesday, 6 September 2023

A flocking progress report: The Russian troops and equipment

I have now had the opportunity to photograph the Russian figures and vehicles that I have renovated, rebased, and flocked with cork granules, and here they are:

Monday, 4 September 2023

A flocking progress report

In the run up to the start of my radiotherapy, I had been continuing to work my way through the figures and vehicles that I renovated during the COVID outbreak, flocking their bases with fine cork granules. I have continued doing this – albeit at a slightly slower pace – since my radiotherapy started, and I have now reached the point where this phase of the project has finished.

To date I have flocked the following:


  • Infantry figures: 89
  • Artillery figures: 41 (including 4 x naval gunners)
  • Officer figures: 10
  • Tanks and self-propelled guns: 6 (1 x T-60 light tank and 5 x T-34/76 medium tanks)
  • Armoured cars: 5 (5 x FAI)
  • Artillery pieces: 19 (including 7 x 45mm M1932/M1937 anti-tank guns, 4 x 76.2mm M1927 regimental guns, 1 x 76.2mm M1939 divisional gun, 2 x 122mm M1938 howitzers, 3 x 152mm M1909/30 howitzers)
  • Artillery tractors: 11 (including 2 x STZ-5 light tractors, 3 x T-20 Komsomolets light tractors, and 3 x Komintern heavy tractors)
  • Wheeled vehicles: 15 trucks


  • Infantry figures: 114 (including 1 x Policeman, 12 x Hungarian infantry, and 8 x Spanish infantry)
  • Artillery figures: 39 (including 6 x Luftwaffe gunners and 5 x Hungarian gunners)
  • Officer figures: 8 (including 1 x Hungarian officer and 1 x Spanish officer)
  • Tanks and self-propelled guns: 10 (2 x PzKpfw III medium tanks, 2 x PzKpfw IV medium tanks, 2 x Hungarian 38M Toldi light tanks, 2 x Panzerjager I, 2 x 150mm sIG 33 [1 x PzKpfw II chassis and 1 x PzKpfw III chassis) self-propelled guns)
  • Armoured cars: 2 (1 x SdKfz 222 light armoured car and 1 x SdKfz 231 heavy armoured car)
  • Artillery pieces: 17 (including 2 x 37mm PAK 36 anti-tank guns, 4 x 50mm PAK 38 anti-tank guns, 1 x 75mm GK 06 light mountain gun, 3 x 75mm leIG 18 light infantry guns, 1 x 150mm sIG 33 heavy infantry gun, and 3 x leFH 18 light howitzers)
  • Half-tracks: 5 (1 x SdKFZ 11 light half-tracks, 1 x SdKfz 251 armoured half-track, and 3 x SdKfz 7 medium half-tracks)
  • Wheeled vehicles: 15 (including 1 x Citroen staff car, 5 x Kubelwagen light cars, 2 x Steyr 1500A heavy cars, 3 x Opel Blitz light trucks, and 2 x Krupp Protze light trucks)

As I look back at what I have done, it turns out to be a more extensive list than I expected ... and whilst searching for something else on Saturday, I found another couple of boxes of stuff that need to be renovated and rebased. So much – in fact – that I suspect that it will double the size of the collection that I have already done!

Saturday, 2 September 2023

Nugget 355

The editor of THE NUGGET sent me the latest issue earlier this week, and I sent it to the printer this morning. With luck it should be ready to be posted out to members by the middle of next week.

IMPORTANT: Please note that this is the first issue of THE NUGGET to be published for the 2023-2024 subscription year.

If you have not yet re-subscribed, an email reminder was sent to you some time ago with the relevant information you require to do so. If you have lost this and wish to re-subscribe or you are a new subscriber, please request a PayPal invoice or the bank transfer information from the Treasurer or follow the instructions on the relevant page of the website.

Friday, 1 September 2023

Things did not quite go as expected

Firstly, thanks to everyone who wrote a comment on yesterday’s blog post. By the time I got home from the hospital I wasn’t in the mood for answering each one individually, but I enjoyed reading them.

As you might gather, things did not quite go as I expected. Sue and I arrived at 1.00pm and whilst she remained outside in the waiting area, I was ushered into the Radiology Department. I waited there until nearly 1.45pm, at which point I was told to empty my bladder and then drink 350ml of water as quickly as I could.

At 2.00pm my bladder was subject to an ultrasound scan … and was found to be too empty. I then had to drink a further 350ml of water and at 2.30pm I had a second ultrasound scan … and this time I was told that the scar tissue from my colostomy was making it difficult to see how full my bladder was and that I was going to need to have a CT scan.

I was directed to a changing room and changed out of my clothes and put on a back-opening gown and non-slip socks. Once I had done this, I was taken into the treatment room and given a CT scan. This apparently satisfied the radiotherapists who were administering my treatment, and my prostate and its associated lymph nodes were then zapped with directional X-rays. Once this was done (and the zapping only lasted a few minutes) I was shown back into the changing room, and once I was dressed, I was allowed to leave. By this time it was 3.15pm and I was both hungry (I’d had no lunch) and bursting to go to the loo!

Apparently, the problem with my bladder is associated with my slow metabolic rate, and I take longer than the average person to pass water through my system. Therefore, as from today, I have to start the water drinking process at least an hour before my appointment to ensure that my bladder is full when I am given my pre-procedure ultrasound.

To add a further bit of confusion to my situation, at the end of today's treatment I was given a completely different schedule of treatment times from the ones I was given during my recent visit to Guy's Hospital, London Bridge. As a result, I am going to have to change a number of appointments I have already arranged, and I am definitely going to have to miss several important Masonic meetings that I was due to attend. This is somewhat annoying and inconvenient ... but the success of my radiotherapy is my most important concern and must take priority over everything else.

Thursday, 31 August 2023

And so it begins … at last!

On Tuesday I was supposed to go to Guy’s Hospital Cancer Care Centre at London Bridge for my first session of radiotherapy treatment, but on Monday this was cancelled, and I was told that I would have to go to the hospital’s outstation (the Macmillan Dimbleby Cancer Care Centre) at Queen Mary’s Hospital on Wednesday afternoon to start my treatment. On Tuesday I had a telephone call that told me that my start date had been moved to Thursday, so later today I hope that I will begin my course of radiotherapy.

I have read all the literature I’ve been given about the treatment, and I’ve got a fairly good idea what will happen … but until it does my nervousness about the treatment and any possible side effects will remain.

Tuesday, 29 August 2023

Some more Command Decision cover photographs

The response to my recent blog post that featured the cover images used on Frank Chadwick’s BARBAROSSA 25 was very positive and I thought that my regular blog readers might appreciate seeing the photographs used on the covers of the other COMMAND DECISION series of books.


This mini-campaign book was included with my copy of the first edition of COMMAND DECISION.

The front cover image. Its caption reads 'Armored column of CCB halts while a battery of the 696th Field Artillery passes through Bastogne'.
The back cover image. Its caption reads 'German Volksgrenadiers move southwest along the rail line, escorted by a Gw38(t) and two StuG IIIs'.


This was the Cold War version of COMMAND DECISION and included the ORBATs and hexed map for LANDJUT, the Soviet invasion/NATO defense of Schleswig-Holstein and the Jutland Peninsula.

The front cover image. Its caption reads 'While a ZSU-23/4 stands guard, a T-72 battalion moves across a small stream by means of an AVLB'.
The back cover image. Its caption reads 'British infantry hold the edge of a town against a Soviet mechanized assault'.


This was the Great War version of COMMAND DECISION and included the ORBATs and hexed maps for ten scenarios, including a bathtubbed version of the 1914 campaign on the Western Front.

The front cover image. Its caption reads 'In the east, the war remained mobile. Germans attack a Russian-held village in 1916'.
The back cover image. Its caption reads 'During 1914, strongpoints expand into trenches. The BEF defends against a German counterattack'.

BASTOGNE was written and developed by Frank Chadwick and the late Loren Wiseman and published in 1987 by Game Designers’ Workshop (GDW) (ISBN 0-943580-31-5).

COMBINED ARMS was written and developed by Frank Chadwick and Brad Hay and published in 1988 by Game Designers’ Workshop (GDW) (ISBN 0-943580-32-3).

OVER THE TOP was written and developed by the late Greg Novak and Kevin Brown and published in 1990 by Game Designers’ Workshop (GDW) (ISBN 1-55878-012-2).

Monday, 28 August 2023

Looking backward in order to go forward

Like most wargamers of my generation (i.e. those born during the late 1940s and early 1950s) I began my wargaming in the age of Donald Featherstone’s WAR GAMES and James Lawford’s and Peter Young’s CHARGE! I had armies of Airfix plastic figures and a collection of model vehicles manufactured by ROCO and Airfix, with air support supplied by model aircraft from Frog and Airfix. I had two main collections – American Civil War and World War II – and I fought numerous wargames with them on the floor of my shared bedroom and the living room floor and table. I eventually ended up with a green-painted pasting table … which was great for battles that could be fought on a tabletop that was approximately 2’ wide and 6’ long!

After leaving school in 1968 I bought my first metal figures from Hinton Hunt’s shop in Camden Passage. It was just after Tony Richardson’s film ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’ was released, and I bought a number of British and Russian infantry and cavalry, which I painted (very badly) using gloss Humbrol enamel paints. (I still have some of them in storage and I really ought to strip of my awful paint job and repaint them.) I supplemented the Russian infantry with some bought from Douglas Miniatures, which were painted using Matt Humbrol enamel paints.

I studied for my Cambridge University Certificate in Education at Hockerill College of Education, Bishop’s Stortford, from 1971 to 1973, and during my time there I bought quite a few ROCO Cold War tanks and vehicles. Once I had qualified, I worked for two years at Burnt Mill Comprehensive School, Harlow, and my Cold War and World War II collections continued to expand. I did attend a few meetings of the Harlow Wargames Club, but never felt particularly welcome, and this confirmed my decision that solo wargaming was for me.

In 1975 I moved to London and began working at Woolwich Polytechnic School for Boys, Woolwich, and during my time there I was able to run an after-school wargame club which attracted a few loyal members, one of whom (Alan Abbey) I am still in regular contact with.

It was during the late 1970s that I came into contact with Eric Knowles, and for the first time I actually began to wargame as a member of a group (you could never term the collection of wargamers who met once a week in Eric’s shop’s basement as a club!) and took part in the Madasahatta Campaign … which fired my interest in colonial and World War I wargaming. In 1980 the late Paddy Griffith invited me to attend what became the first Conference of Wargamers (COW), and I’ve remained a very active member of Wargame Developments ever since, having served as the Treasurer and Membership Secretary for the last forty-three years.

By the mid 1980s I was married to Sue, and I had moved on to a new role as a Post-16 Consortium Coordinator. I was based in a number of schools in the Borough of Greenwich, and whilst I was at Thomas Tallis School, I ran a wargame option as part of their Wednesday afternoon elective studies course. It was quite a successful course (we fought an Eastern Front/Great Patriotic War mini-campaign) and I actually had one student achieve an A grade for his General Studies GCSE coursework based around a wargame that he designed.

When the Inner London Education Authority (ILEA) was wound up in 1991 I moved on to work as the Technical and Vocational Education Initiative (TVEI) coordinator and Head of Careers/Work Experience Coordinator at Crown Woods School, and I remained there as a full-time teacher until 2001. At that point my job became redundant, and I set up a teaching supply agency that provided experienced teaching staff to fill long term vacancies … and I returned to work in the IT Department at Crown Woods School for several days a week whilst also working part time for the Greenwich Education Business Partnership (GEBP). I finished my career in 2013 as a Business Studies and Travel & Tourism Lecturer at Crossways Sixth Form in Brockley, at which point I decided that forty years in teaching was enough and that it was time to retire.

During my working life I continued to wargame as and when I could and built up - and disposed of - quite a few collections. Now that I am a seventy-three-year-old, the time has come to think seriously about downsizing my collections, and recently I have been pondering the answer to the wargamer’s version of the final ‘Desert Island Discs’* question: what wargaming book and what wargame collection would you want to have with you if you were marooned on a desert island?

After considerable thought my reply would be:

  • Joseph Morschauser’s HOW TO PLAY WARGAMES MINIATURE (which just bumped Donald Featherstone’s WAR GAMES into second place).
  • My Eastern Front/Great Patriotic War collection (with my Belle Époque collection just behind it).

Writing this blog post and answering that question has helped me to identify how I now want to move forward for the foreseeable future.

* For the benefit of my non-UK blog readers, ‘Desert Island Discs’ is a BBC radio programme that has been broadcast weekly (with seasonal breaks) since 29th January 1942! The format is simple: each week a guest is invited to share a choice of the top ten records that they would like to have with them if they were castaway on a desert island. They were also entitled to chose one book (in addition to the Bible or similar religious book and the complete works of Shakespeare) and one luxury that they could take with them.

Sunday, 27 August 2023

Barbarossa 25 cover images

I was surprised to read that some of my regular blog readers had not heard of this book before and one expressed an interest in the image on the cover. I have therefore scanned them in, and here they are:

The front cover image. Its caption reads 'Soviet infantry mans the fortification line on the outskirts of Moscow'.
The back cover image. Its caption reads 'German tanks and panzer grenadiers engage a Soviet rearguard while horse-drawn artillery withdraws up the road'.

Unfortunately the other photographs in the book are all quite small and reproduced in black and white. The terrain used was produced by Geohex.

Friday, 25 August 2023

The historiography of World War I: The latest Military History Plus podcast

I managed to listen to the last of the current series of Military History Plus podcasts yesterday … and it was yet another excellent one!

Professor Gary Sheffield and Dr Spencer Jones are both well-known for their research and writings about this conflict, and I cannot think of any other historians who are better placed to discuss its historiography.

In my opinion they pretty well demolish the emotive (and inaccurate) idea that the British Army were ‘lions led by donkeys’. I first came across this interpretation of history when I read Alan Clarke’s THE DONKEYS back in the mid-1960s, and at the time it was the popular view of how warfare was conducted on the Western Front. It’s probably true to say that Clarke’s book, when coupled with the study of the ‘war poets’ as part of the secondary school curriculum and Joan Littlewood’s 1963 stage musical of ‘Oh, What a Lovely War! (and Richard Attenborough’s 1969 film version) embedded this in popular culture. Add ‘Blackadder goes forth’ into the mixture, and I suspect that this point-of-view still predominates.

However, certainly since the centenary of the outbreak of the war, this has begun to change … thanks to the work done by Messrs Sheffield and Jones amongst others. Far more people now accept that the British Army and its commanders learned the hard lessons meted out to them, and by the time of the Hundred Days campaign in 1918, they were more than capable of defeating the Germans. It has even been written that the British Army of 1918 was probably the best army that the country has ever sent into battle.

I thoroughly recommend that anyone with even the vaguest interest in the Western Front from 1914 to 1918 should listen to this podcast.

Thursday, 24 August 2023

Barbarossa 25

I bought a copy of Frank Chadwick’s BARBAROSSA 25 when it was first published in 1988, and I’ve read it many times.

I would rate it as being almost as influential in generating my long-term desire to re-fight the Axis invasion of Russia as reading about Lionel Tarr’s wargames The book outlines how Frank Chadwick devised a bathtub campaign of the invasion with everything being scaled down by 1:25 … approximately. (This seems to have been done so that the maps from the board game FIRE IN THE EAST could be used as the campaign maps.) I was so taken with the concept that I bought the tabletop rules that the campaign was designed to work with (COMMAND DECISION) and even painted and based a two-battalion Hungarian infantry regiment (with supporting artillery) to use with them.

I never used my Hungarians, and I even lent them to another wargamer for a time. They eventually ended up in my shed … from which they were rescued some years ago. Some have even been recently renovated and now form part of my newly-flocked Eastern Front/Great Patriotic War collection.

They are now awaiting their turn to have their bases flocked ... which should be in the very near future.

BARBAROSSA 25: COMMAND DECISION CAMPAIGN MODULE was written by Frank Chadwick and published in 1988 by Game Designers’ Workshop (GDW) (ISBN 0-943580-98-6).

Monday, 21 August 2023

Flocking news

Over the weekend I’ve been making progress with the flocking of the bases of my Eastern Front/Great Patriotic War collection, and I should finish all the renovated and rebased figures and vehicles before my radiotherapy starts.

What I have realised is that I still have loads of figures and vehicles that still need to be renovated and/or repainted and/or re-based, and depending upon how I feel during my treatment, I might have a go at dealing with them so that the collection is ready to be used.

Whatever I do, I have a few other wargame-related tasks to perform over the next two months, and they may well have to take precedence. In the meantime, here are some of the photographs of Lionel Tarr’s battles that first inspired me to want to wargame the Eastern Front/Great Patriotic War.

Saturday, 19 August 2023

Rapid Fire! Reloaded

I bought a copy of the RAPID FIRE! rules when they were first published in 1994, …

…but although I enjoyed reading them and the associated supplements, I never persisted with using them and never bought the second edition.

Recently I watched the videos on Ken Hanning’s YouTube channel and he persuaded me that I ought to take a look at the most recent iteration of the rules, RAPID FIRE! RELOADED: FAST PLAY WARGAMING RULES FOR WORLD WAR TWO LAND BATTLES ...


The first of these is split into thirteen sections:

  • What is Rapid Fire Reloaded?
  • Assembling the Forces
  • A British Force
  • A German Force
  • Will they Fight?
  • Can You See the Eenemy?
  • Moving the Troops
  • Firing at the Eenemy!
  • Smoke Shells
  • Close Assault
  • Ambush Firing
  • Multiple Rocket Launchers
  • The Battle for Mouen 28th June 1944

The second contains additional rules and is split into fifteen sections:

  • Paratroops and Gliders
  • Ground Attacks by Aircraft
  • Boats and Amphibious Vehicles
  • Minefields & Engineering Tasks
  • Artillery Options
  • OP Variants and Air OPs
  • Command
  • Supply
  • Vehicle Repairs
  • Amphibious Landings
  • Concealment Markers
  • Large Tank Battles
  • Night Fighting and Snow
  • SMG Companies
  • Solo Games

The books only cost £5.00 each and particularly liked the user-friendly layouts of these conveniently A5-sized booklets. I'm not sure if I will actually use the rules for my own wargames, but even a cursory glance through them has made me realise that the have lots of potential ideas that I can tinker about with and incorporate into my own home-brewed rules.


Thursday, 17 August 2023

Reinforcements for my 20mm World War Two Russian collection

Very recently my old friend David Crook made me aware that a former trader was selling off diecast models of BA-64 armoured cars. As my collection needs some of these light armoured scout cars, I ordered ten and they arrived by post earlier this week.

I hope to repaint and base these vehicles once I have finished flocking the renovated figures and vehicles in my existing collection. They will then form the reconnaissance elements of my Soviet Red Army formations.