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  • in reply to: Reflections on Kreigsspiel a Video! #156333
    Guy Farrish

    Congratulations on your first Kriegsspiel.

    I think it is a superb adjunct to any wargamer’s arsenal. It gives a very different perspective to the experience and although it misses the pretty toy soldier element (Which I like) it has a fascination all its own.

    It makes the military historian in you appreciate why there were those seemingly bizarre missed opportunities and glaring gaffes. When you are in the moment and haven’t got that helicopter vision or 20:20 hindsight it doesn’t seem that obvious that you could win the whole war by a simple oblique advance!

    I hope you have another go soon.

    Also worth remembering , no news is not necessarily bad news. Stick to the plan (but maybe skip the Bucks Fizz and three course breakfast before beginning the advance next time!).

    Great report, thanks for posting.

    in reply to: Pre-emptive NATO air strikes? #156316
    Guy Farrish

    I think the part of the ‘theory’ of air power use here was to bomb and destroy/severely damage the HQ and command elements of Army and OMG elements (Not Oh! My! God! – although that might be appropriate if it turned up a few hundred Km behind your lines!) and key transport/logistics hubs.

    Whether someone had clearly identified those elements and their locations prior to the event is a matter still of some conjecture of course.

    The establishment (return of?) Allied Air Forces Central Europe (AAFCE) in 1974 and the continuing change and refinement of NATO air power theory through the mid 80s shifted the focus from small sorties to very large co-ordinated mixed capability attacks both in support of the land battle, but from our point of view, more interestingly in terms of interdiction well behind the IGB. As well as the conceptual changes new aircraft and more of the old (another wing of F1-11s was deployed in the UK in 1977) gave a real (so the PR went) chance of deep interdiction attacks succeeding.

    This at least in theory would stop the deep battle, follow on force attacks, almost on their start lines in WP countries (even before the FOF concept was properly formulated)

    That all sounds very warry and no doubt might have worked to an extent given a fair wind and perfect execution, but as Martin suggested, Air Forces tend to overpromise and underdeliver  a little(lovely mess accommodation and food though).

    There’s quite a lot of stuff around about the changes in the theory and concept around, not a lot about the methodology or effectiveness of the intelligence picture needed to make this work, so you have to take this bit on faith or a pinch of salt depending on your preference.

    Probably worth a read of  something like this paper for an idea of changing conceptual frameworks of both sides (some caveat as usual about perspective – NATO planner with all the agendas) but it does include lots of references for more reading if you are so inclined.

    Good luck with the project/game

    in reply to: Old Man Yells At Rules #156279
    Guy Farrish

    My Dad taught me chess using Swoppets, Herald and Cherilea knights and footsoldiers as pieces.

    Official figures? Pah!

    (We caved and bought a chess set eventually)

    in reply to: Old Man Yells At Rules #156244
    Guy Farrish

    Fooled me!

    I thought it was written for 15mm?

    I was expecting Bolt Action – best of luck with their weapons ranges!

    in reply to: Pre-emptive NATO air strikes? #156083
    Guy Farrish

    Suspect it might.

    NATO was invited to intervene in Serbia by the UN with air attack in support of UNPROFOR in Operation Deliberate Force. There was also Operation Deny Flight which was the anti-air component.

    Here’s a photo of the USS Saratoga in 1994, having a shore run in Palma de Mallorca having just finished her stint on Deny Flight and about to join Exercise Dynamic Impact


    I doubt the UN would invite NATO to pre-emptively bomb Russia/USSR (especially as they are on the Security Council!)

    in reply to: Unbelievably Crass and Rude #155637
    Guy Farrish

    I think people have always done it.

    It’s just that now they have the platforms to make it global.

    Swings and roundabouts on the www.

    in reply to: Unbelievably Crass and Rude #155589
    Guy Farrish

    I went through a phase of enjoying creatively negative reviews, film and theatre reviews in particular, but it became tiresome when it became clear that the role of professional critic had become a branch of entertainment in itself and, as reviews, their works were less than helpful, and increasingly less than honest.

    Not liking something is okay and if you can’t put your finger on why, or it is something that can’t be altered, – voice, look, accent, best to simply not listen/watch.

    If it is a problem that can be addressed – length of the work, depth of interviewing, sound/vision quality, then mentioning it and suggesting correctives where possible is a good thing and worth doing, in a polite way.

    Commentary about specific content – for example not understanding a particular angle on marketing, perceived responsibility of gamers to do x,y or z when they are personal choices, or not agreeing with the zeitgeist of particular painting modelling or sculpting styles is also fine if done without personal attack.

    Just writing and saying ‘you are xxxx’ doesn’t strike me as helpful, useful or informative except telling us that the sender is in dire need of corrective kinetic facial adjustment.

    I am not a great podcast listener, but God’s Own Scale is one I do like – particularly enjoyed Whirlwind’s interview.


    in reply to: New to the period – help appreciated #155152
    Guy Farrish

    Hi. Welcome to the can of worms that is medieval warfare.

    First up – we know hardly anything about the tactics of the period. There will be someone along in a minute to tell you we do (but we don’t). We know there were some theories (and later manuals)  about how to use individual weapons, and that tournaments were used in the early period as tactical training  (not simply jousts run along a tilt ground) over considerable areas of countryside – but what the best formations were, how retinues and arrays formed for battle and interacted in combat is not clear at all.

    That it was more sophisticated than Oman’s dismissive view of armed mobs lining up and hitting each is other is pretty widely accepted these days (isn’t it?) but nobody had done the battle course at Warminster either.

    Second. Forget most of the gee whiz brochure figures of English Longbow enthusiasts.

    Yes you probably can get off 12 shots a minute.

    You carry a sheaf of 24 arrows and you probably have another one somewhere relatively (define relatively) close to hand.

    That’s your 48 arrows you were issued with for the campaign.

    That’s 4 minutes shooting.

    Depending whether you are looking at mid 14th  century or late 15th, the ratio of longbows to everyone else is going to be roughly between 1:1 and 5:1.

    So the 80% of an English army are not going to stand around brewing up (no tea yet for a start) when they’ve loosed all their arrows. They will fight.

    At Agincourt (I apologise – it is an outlier in many instances) they got stuck in, and were generally expected to when required – which was most of the time.

    So short range anti armour certainly, but bayonet charge as well (not always as successful as Brits like to think; see lots of other HYW combats apart from Crecy, Poitiers and Agincourt)).

    Whatever you decide – weird ‘herce’ formations (whatever they were – see ‘we know hardly anything about the tactics’ above) or ‘revisionist’ mixed ‘units’ of interleaved bow and men at arms – enjoy yourself and have fun.

    in reply to: What's on your painting desk/table/corner #154953
    Guy Farrish

    Lovely figures, never heard of Grumbler before.

    (That Baccus Sherman is Ginormous!)

    in reply to: Aztec Temple Corner Walls #154915
    Guy Farrish

    Yes, well done on all counts.

    I’ve painted Aztecs before and love the look of the them.

    I’m trying hard not to be tempted again by your stuff, but you aren’t making it easy!

    Thanks for posting.

    in reply to: How many 6mm on one 80x40mm base #154684
    Guy Farrish

    I often wonder this.

    In the days when 1 figure represented 20 soldiers (or 33 or whatever) in rules, it mattered how many figures were in a unit and you would often have a different number of figures to represent different organisations or campaign wastage etc.

    Now we are all ‘element’ oriented and bases are simply expensive counters what does it matter how many figures there re on a base?

    Completely irrelevant in game terms really.

    A purely aesthetic choice.

    in reply to: Folk Horror #154064
    Guy Farrish

    This perhaps gives a better feel for Border Morris

    Dancing down the sun

    in reply to: Folk Horror #154054
    Guy Farrish

    Standard (southern) English Morris as seen in the Cotswolds mainly these days is (generally) a pleasant pastime for folk dance enthusiasts with an eye on tourism and a bit of maintaining old traditions on a sunny summer’s day.

    Border (Welsh border that is) Morris has a slightly different tradition and tends to be more tied into the main ‘old’ religious festivals of Beltane, Lammas etc, is more boisterous (and sometimes threatening) and the blackened faces are for disguise as some of the activities in previous centuries bordered on extortion with menaces, vandalism and fairly major breaches of the peace.

    Here are some border Morris at Beltane: Widders Morris

    and the same side in Chepstow: Border Morris Chepstow

    There’s a two bridges festival in winter (winter solstice) in Chepstow where the Mari Lwyds and Border Morris meet at night on the bridge and the wassailing (‘give us a drink or suffer the consequences’) goes on in the town. That’s quite a scary combination – there’s a priest with a devil mask in attendance usually as well).

    This is English Cotswold Morris: Abingdon Morris

    Guy Farrish

    Interesting .

    This battle – I take it the Soviet leader is more a Rokossovsky than a Zhukov? The Russians should have attacked (and died) for the Motherland! None of this namby pamby revisionist discretion is the better part of valour nonsense! Not something you’d want your kommissar to put on your report.

    Good series though!

    in reply to: Folk Horror #154030
    Guy Farrish

    Thanks folks.

    Border Morris man and Scarecrow armatures made and first putty on.

    I will make another Mari Lwyd, it would be about 14ft high compared to true size 25/28mm figs – too tall even for a possessed hobby horse!

    in reply to: My First Time #153775
    Guy Farrish

    I won’t hijack any more Jut to say you may be right – I know some ‘commercial advisers’ are arguing the PECR case but the GDPR should prevail I would have thought. (and would like)


    No more from me on this thread about PECR DP GDPR.

    in reply to: My First Time #153765
    Guy Farrish

    If you as an individual buy something from a company, they may be able to legally add you to their own mailing list for future similar items IF they have given you a clear chance to opt out and you didn’t. (This is the ‘soft opt-in’ from the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003, which sits alongside the Data Protection Act,  and the UK GDPR).

    It’s a bit cheeky, and people push it to the limit (along with the pages of ‘legitimate interest’ check boxes which are always checked to allow and flood you with ‘related’ ads if you miss the fact they exist on websites).

    in reply to: My First Time #153723
    Guy Farrish

    Ah! A member of ‘The Customer is Always Wrong’ fraternity.

    I don’t buy off sites that don’t have a physical address or landline listed.

    Your complaint isn’t a ‘moan’, its a valid dissatisfaction with poor selling procedures and abysmal customer care.

    At least they bothered to reply to tell you they weren’t going to answer your queries.

    You did the right thing – Bin ’em.


    in reply to: Thoughts on ebay managed payments and ecommerce #153525
    Guy Farrish

    Paypal and ebay split into separate companies in in 2015 with a 5 year agreement to continue their favoured payment method relationship. That 5 years has ended and ebay wants a bigger cut of the sale – hence this change. Business sellers have been in the process of changeover from Paypal  since 2018. 2021 marks the end of the rollout and is now ‘inviting’ private seller to change.


    As for the bank account business – are you sure that is how it is supposed to work Willz?

    My understanding is the buyer uses Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Paypal, Applepay or Googlepay to pay Ebay, who then disburse the money, minus charges, to your bank account periodically. This is very similar to the Amazon system, and no bank details are made available to buyers.


    in reply to: 10/12mm castle walls #153435
    Guy Farrish

    They did ( and may do again?)

    Our incredibly desireable castles have temporarily been made ‘Unavailable’. Due to the wide variety of styles and options, at this moment in time we are not able to produce these highly individual items. However, as they are a very popular product, we wish to develop the range and so plan to run a Kickstarter at some point in the future at which point you will be able to purchase your own unique Sally 4th Castle

    Old Glory ‘Grand Scale’ do castles and walls – pricey but they may have something you might like? The Crusader Castle set looks nice but it’s £70.

    in reply to: A Kursk based boardgame #151615
    Guy Farrish

    Nice review Norm. Thanks.

    I’m very tempted. Like Deephorse my money is theoretically allocated elsewhere (about 30 times over!) but I am wondering if there shouldn’t be a COBRA meeting to override current priorities.

    I have scars from seventies East Front boardgames (Drang Nach Osten and Unentschieden anyone?) and wonder if this might not be the rehabilitation experience I need? Three hours seems eminently manageable compared to the 12000 minutes brochure figure for Drang Nach Osten!

    in reply to: FPW Movies #151521
    Guy Farrish

    War and Peace?

    Bondarchuk – 7 and a half hours!

    King Vidor –  3 and half hour love story?!

    I refuse to discuss les Mis on the grounds of retaining my sanity.

    I still can’t think of any more FPW movies.

    in reply to: FPW Movies #151511
    Guy Farrish

    Frankly not really.

    There is a (very) short black and white silent film ‘The Last Cartridges’ (1897) you can see here The Last Cartridges on the Internet Archive. It is a very small vignette of the defence of a farmhouse by French soldiers based on a painting but may inspire small unit actions.

    As for the rest there is a French West German Film – Die Gans von Sedan (1959) (English title: Without Trumpet or Drum) which is a comedic take on the post Sedan phase. Unlikely to inspire a wargame despite being a not bad film.

    Beyond that…

    I’m always surprised no-one appears to have filmed Zola’s La Debacle – a sort of buddy film waiting to be made – though obviously a pretty downbeat one given the ending. Some fairly drastic editing should make a really good war movie – or a really sad buddy movie/love story. I guess the problem is there are actually about three film in there minimum.

    in reply to: Bosworth update and deployment options #151485
    Guy Farrish

    Great idea to get a battle like this on a realistic sized (small) table.

    Re the furrows and Ingram’s contention that fighting North/South makes it easier because of the alignment of the ridge and furrows: that seems odd to me. You have probably read Foard’s Bosworth Battlefield: A Reassessment paper (available on the Battlefield’s Trust site Bosworth Battlefield Survey if anyone wants a look) and his figure 10 (in a separate zip folder on the site) shows the distribution of ridge and furrow on the field. They seem to be mostly running (roughly) east-west so an army moving north/south would be going up and down over them.

    On the other hand I’m not sure which would be worse anyway – having the ridges across your axis of advance and having to rise and fall as you moved or having the rises and falls parallel to your movement.

    Looking forward to seeing more, whatever the impact of medieval field systems!

    in reply to: Men Will.Be Boys #151344
    Guy Farrish

    Ahh! Elastolin I remember, but I have always associated them with plastic figures.

    Sawdust composite material it says, now I know where to look following up your info Blackhat – thanks!

    What an intriguing idea. Not quite compressed paper but close enough for jazz.

    in reply to: Men Will.Be Boys #151332
    Guy Farrish

    Don’t remember the Men Will Be Boys clip but I’ve seen the other two before.

    I still don’t know how you make model soldiers as shown from compressed paper(commentary on the Cushing piece) and wonder if something didn’t get a bit confused in the script writing phase.

    Also a very useful reminder to view even contemporary sources with some reserve – some of the painting and modelling techniques have more than a faint whiff of ‘well just pretend to be doing something to the figure then’ stage direction.

    Interesting – are there any scraps of mainstream ‘human interest’ (filler) reportage being made about current wargaming which will intrigue future generations of social historians I wonder?

    Proper dress though – no joggers or hoodies in sight.

    Not surprised we (insert old codger refrain of choice) since then – no standards these days (etc).

    in reply to: 10mm Cardinal #151235
    Guy Farrish

    I’ve still got it somewhere – haven’t looked at it for some years (decades?).

    in reply to: 10mm Cardinal #151226
    Guy Farrish

    I made a couple of 25mm Tang infantry about 40 years ago!

    I take it research has moved on from WRG’s Armies and Enemies of Ancient China though?

    in reply to: Game / Battle Reports #151044
    Guy Farrish

    As it echoes what I said in my last sentence – I agree with what Zac said!

    in reply to: Game / Battle Reports #150973
    Guy Farrish

    It depends.

    I would once have been almost as down on battle reports as Deephorse (never quite – it was the extended reports on The Battle of Blasthof Bridge and Sittangbad in Charge! which started me off on wargaming after all).

    That negativity was probably because of the style of many reports as much as anything:

    A blow by blow description list of the modifiers for each charge, each combat calculation, each post combat morale test, with dice throws. Repeat for every move.

    The alternative – purple prose descriptions of charges across the green baize steppes and Regal Cinema Saturday morning B picture dialogue were possibly worse.

    But I have come to value reports that describe a battle simply, with useful dips into the mechanics to explain/discuss rule sets unfamiliar to me.

    Some reports can break all the rules and still entertain. How? Good writing. What’s that?

    If I knew that I’d be on the phone to Joss Whedon telling him he’d have to pay me double for the rights to my latest book for having been mean to Charisma Carpenter, instead of writing this.


    To answer the question:

    Why the battle is being fought (scenario – even if you make it up to contextualise a throw down, one off, battle, it is better than a pointless gladiatorial bash).

    What the result was and how/why this fits into the above and how it would affect future events(who would omit this!? – lots of people – ‘we didn’t work out who won cos went to the pub after turn four, but we had a great time’).

    A (brief) description of the pivotal moments of the battle (as purple as you like if it avoids cod archaisms, didactic speech in the middle of a melee and musings on the justness of X’s cause – God is on no-one’s side in battle), a comment on unusual rules events (why do they say cavalry have to pursue but don’t tell you what happens when an enemy unit is right in the path of the pursuit? Ideas/thoughts/ curses?). A quick thought on why it panned out as it did.

    Perhaps a thought on whether the result by the rules reflected what you thought would have/should have happened really (difficult in a fantasy type battle but if in your head three elves should always defeat a hundred orcs you may consider why they didn’t this time, and if you want to tweak the rules accordingly, without breaking the rest of the rules, how you propose doing it).

    On the other hand – you’re writing it for your enjoyment as well as ours, so go with you want out of a batrep.

    in reply to: The Irish Jacobite Army in 15mm #150386
    Guy Farrish

    Great stuff!

    Looking forward to seeing the assembled force.


    in reply to: 10mm Cardinal #150256
    Guy Farrish


    I think that with normal viewing ranges at this scale he will be fine.

    Close up photography of my figures always scares me!

    But that isn’t how you see them 99% of the time.

    in reply to: 10mm Cardinal #150250
    Guy Farrish

    Thanks Mike (Muse? Me? Surely life hasn’t got that bad?)

    Although he was sort of based on the guy in the picture, he’s got his hand raised to deliver a blessing rather than reading a sermon or orders. But a nice idea should I get round to more of them.

    in reply to: Soft metal wire #150211
    Guy Farrish

    Alec Tiranti copper armature wire

    May be a bit pricy but it twists easily and (thicker gauges) holds shape well.


    in reply to: What You Look Like #150207
    Guy Farrish

    OMG! There’s that Archers/Radio Times effect again.

    No, sorry -too obscure for me (or I’m too obscure for it).

    What’s that then?

    in reply to: Wofun Miniatures deliveries from Europe #150174
    Guy Farrish

    Good point – I’d forgotten most orders would be over the small package limit.


    in reply to: Wofun Miniatures deliveries from Europe #150147
    Guy Farrish


    Not what is supposed to be happening.

    EU hasn’t introduced its VAT changes yet (1 July) and UK VAT should now be collected by EU (or any foreign) company registering with HMRC. You should not be being asked to pay VAT and handling charge on delivery anymore for overseas packages under£135.00.

    What happens if the firm sends without the requisite VAT paid sticker? – dunno yet!


    in reply to: 12mm peasants #150116
    Guy Farrish

    Alack! I can’t think of any 12mm peasants.

    (I always feel sorry for ‘alack’)

    in reply to: O Group #150091
    Guy Farrish

    Dydd Gwyl Dewi Sant Hapus i chi gyd!

    Ta! Sounds good.

    in reply to: O Group #150087
    Guy Farrish

    Publication date?

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 1,323 total)