Saturday, June 20, 2015

Organizing and repairs

Talking about LPE on the Chipco Games Yahoo Group got me back in touch with my friend Steve S. Steve is primarily an ancients and medieval gamer (he is listed in the credits of several of the Warhammer Ancients Battles supplements), but enjoys all of the Chipco Games.

Recently Steve has been conducting a solitaire campaign using the Chipco rules Days of Knights to resolve the battles. He has been posting the results on the Yahoo group.

Steve suggested he and I get together for a game at a newly established San Antonio store, Tabletop. Tabletop’s new location is only a couple miles from each of our homes. So last Friday night we arranged to have a game there. While everyone around us played GW or Star Wars, we brought out the Chipco rules and historical figures!

Steve brought along Successor armies, but used Fantasy Rules! Tournament and Campaign Edition or FR!TCE as the rules. It was the first time I had used them, but having played LPE for so long I picked it up easily. Not enough to prevent being thoroughly defeated, but at least I understood why!

Then I pulled out my LPE armies and we had a game of that. It was a very bloody game.

Neither game was particularly interesting in a tactical way. There was little terrain (okay, there wasn’t any terrain) and essentially we lined up and had at each other. Basically, we were refamiliarizing ourselves with the rules and trying to generate some interest in historicals. We did get a couple, "Ooo ahhs."

On other subjects, Ray has been on a collecting spree. And since he’s coming out to San Antonio in a few days he has had the goodies sent to my house. So I’ve been vicariously opening his packages, pawing through the toys, and sending him pictures to tease him. Objects have so far all been Napoleonics from Warlord Games, including French Light Infantry, Guard Grenadiers, Chasseurs a Cheval, Vistula Legion infantry, paints, brushes and the free figure of Napoleon on foot.

I’ve been cleaning up and organizing my 28mm Napoleonic collection. Ray and I long ago decided to base all of our 28mm stuff singly and then use sabots to play any particular rule set. It works, but I managed to get lots of units split up into different boxes and otherwise mixed up. All are now properly sorted, but I found a lot of detached cavalry riders, broken bayonets and swords, and missing flags. Surgery is being performed.

By the way, what is the Interwebz opinion about broken swords, bayonets, and plumes? Do you bother fixing them? Only the “easy” fixes?

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Coming Back

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged. We’ll skip the why’s and wherefore’s and just move on to toy soldiering!

Ray and I have been gaming partners for almost twenty years. Early during our association he discovered a new set of fast play Napoleonic rules titled Le Petit Empereur by Chipco Games.

LPE was an immediate hit with our club. We could play a game to a full conclusion in an evening. Sometimes even two games. It is similar to DBA in that the basic game has a fixed number of elements (28 + a general) with each country having a different mix. There are only seven unit types:

EC – Elite Cavalry
OC – Other Cavalry
ET – Elite Infantry
LN – Line Infantry
LT – Light Infantry (in the 1st edition, these were more like conscripts)
ART – Foot Artillery
LtA – Light (Horse) Artillery

Our club, Lone Star Historical Miniatures, played in 15mm and many of the club members built armies. In fact, I have ten or so! Soon we were playing games including two, three, and even more armies. Our local convention, MillenniumCon, even hosted a hugely successful LPE tournament in 1998.

As such things go we eventually burned out and moved on to other games.

But in 2006 Ray and I were finally moving into 28mm historical games. We decided to use MillenniumCon as a deadline to motivate us to prepare new armies. Our first subject was Napoleonics. Although we wanted to play large games with big units of 24 or more infantry, we knew we needed an intermediate goal.

So out came LPE again. I ended up building a bespoke 28mm French army, but Ray did as originally planned and used his Anglo-Brunswick LPE army as a building block to larger army. At the 2006 convention we put on the game several times and it was a great success with players, both returning veterans and new conscripts. Sadly the websites hosting our pictures are gone but the AAR is at The Miniatures Page. I put on additional LPE games at 2009 ChimaeraCon and 2010 MillenniumCon.

Ray used his original Anglo-Brunswick army to expand into a 25:1 British division. Now he has decided that the plethora of plastic kits means it is time to build a French army as well. We are going to use this coming MillenniumCon as another deadline to build up our armies. I already have French, British, Dutch-Belgian and Hanoverians. I will use this opportunity to build Prussians.

But instead of just 28 elements per side, we plan to have at least double-sized armies and hopefully triple! Stay tuned to this channel as we work toward MillenniumCon!