Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The schedule for 2012 and the Alamo at Cancon

Had no sooner finished my FPW Prussians and French then discovered I require more of 'em! (and who'd a thought THAT right?!?)  Well, I've committed to doing a Black Powder FPW demo at the next Cancon (in 2013) as both myself and mate Doug will have enough 28mm figures between us to do a corps-sized encounter (thinking Froeschwiller or Spicheren) BUT we've gotta paint 'em first!  And there's the rub - I get more Prussians and their allies by painting more figures for Doug's French.  Just finishing yet more Turkos (we will have no less than five battalions of them!) - this time the Foundry figures.  I'll post the results when I'm done.  Then I'll have to get stuck into a brigade's worth of Wurttemburgers I've acquired for painting the Turkos. Got some beautiful Pomeranian Hussars too that someone else has done a brilliant job on (just had to re-base and touch them up a bit) - so I'll post shots of those too.

As promised last post - a pic of my finished French Second Empire Army

In the meantime I started (but have not finished) a small Napoleonic Regiment des Dromadaires (the French Camel Corps) unit from the1798-1800 Egyptian campaign (one of my favourite Napoleonic periods).  They're about 2/3rds done and I'll post shots of those too when I finish the basing.  Plenty to look forward too if Doc's Project of Works gets underway!

Other Napoleonic goodness in that pipeline will include Berg Lancers (Perry's of course), a battalion of Front Rank German Austrians (in helmets) and three battalions of Victrix Austrian Landwehr which I think I'll do as 6th & 4th Vienna Volunteers (the heroes of Ebelsberg in the 1809 campaign).  The latter I've just constructed using a little conversion work too (God bless the invention of plastic figures!) AND I'm awaiting my order of a battalion of the new Perry's Hungarian Grenadiers - phew!!!  Lots of Napoleonic goodness to come in 2012!  Other projects also rumbling along in the background are my WWII German Fallschirmjaeger company (with armour support!) and my ACW Confederate army - so I'll probably visit them from time to time this year too.

The other thing worth reporting on was Cancon 2011.  For those who don't know, Cancon or the Canberra Gaming Convention is Australia's premier gaming fest held every year on our national day weekend/holiday.  Its the largest of its kind in the southern hemisphere with around 10,000 or so attending over the three days. Maybe because the weather was a bit kinder this year (perversely its usually held in the scorching height of the Canberra summer!) it appeared to be less chaotic - although there were good numbers attending it wasn't as packed as usual. But apart from the usual comps there were only one or two really good (as in visually attractive) demo games this year.  The best of them by far in my opinion was the Alamo game organised and run by my mate Greg  (who's spectacular Kokoda photos have graced this blog).  Unfortunately I didn't get back from the coast in time (again!) to participate but managed to catch some of the early action on Day 1 at Cancon. To Greg's credit all the players I saw participating were young'uns!  The attractive demo caught the attention of a lot of the younger Cancon attendees and they were really enjoying it either commanding Santa Ana's Mexican hordes or Travis' Texans!

As shown above, Greg's table was simple but dramatic with the beautifully detailed Alamo fort.  The numbers of protagonists were proportionally correct - you really notice just how few defenders there were and the huge area, particularly the outer walls, that they had to defend against thousands of Mexican troops.

Yes folks, your eyes do not deceive you - that attractive young lady commanded the Texans defending the (main) southern gate - the Texans are withdrawing to the inner defences so as not to get caught on the outer walls in the Mexican assault - after delivering some punishing fire of course!  The two Mexican commanders are looking at the main citadel and thinking 'Oi Carumba' - they've still gotta get into it after crossing that wide open inner courtyard!

The Mexicans assault the southern gate - the Texan commander kept her men manning the walls until the last possible moment to inflict maximum damage on the hordes of attackers.  Luckily for the Texans, the Mexicans are lousy shots and rely on massed volleys at close range - sheer firepower - to inflict any real casualties (which they did!)

Arriba mi amigos - keel the Texan dogs! more Mexicans scale the outer walls.

Davey and his mates give the Mexicans a hot time before skeedadlin'
back to the Citadel - yur cutting it mighty fine partner!

Col Travis (top RH side) tellin' those boys to quit being such durned fools - an get offa that wall!  The Texans had to fire until the last moment then cross the wide open inner courtyard, hopefully keeping out of Mexican musket range.  The detail on the Alamo fort was fantastic.  Jim Bowie is somewhere in there with two very large pieces of cutlery just waiting for those Mexicans to show up!

About one third(?) to half of the Mexican force patiently waiting for the next assault on the Alamo!  Even the cavernous main hall at Cancon can't diminish just how many damned Mexicans there are!

There were also a number of other shots I got of the H&M comp that shows some of the beautiful figures of Doug, George and the boys as well as a Flames of War version of Stalingrad with some amazing wrecked buildings but its late and I'll have to sort them out for the next posting.  

Ye Gods I've got a lot of figures to paint.



  1. Good to hear things are rolling along nicely, all the Australian blogs I read say the Alamo game was the best but the show was poorly attended by traders and demo games.....

    1. Angry

      I do not know whose blogs you have been looking at but there were over 1000 competitors and 7000 visitors this year. The largest number ever. Doc must be blind as Eureka were there.

    2. Thanks for that 'Anonymous' - must have walked right past Nick's stand several times. But it did seem that there were less traders than usual - as several of the Cancon regulars (and traders themselves) told me. One of the organisers reckoned there had been 6000 visitors by Sunday afternoon. I could well believe the 1000 competitors although it did seem a lot less crowded than previous Cancons.

    3. Doc

      A couple of regulars were not there one due to illness and one because he had to do his real job. Gerry has not attended for some years now.

  2. I can see why you think this was the best game at the show, it looks superb!!! Nice one Greg!! Lady gamers?? What will they think of next? Not sure my Mrs would be pleased if girlys like that turned up at our games, me on the other hand.........

  3. Very nice, particularly liked the Alamo game, but the Mexicans look very much like French!

  4. There seemed to me to be the usual trade stands although there were some missing - I didn't see Castaway, Eureka or Elite - but the big traders were were there. They were very slick operations - perhaps some of the smaller ones can't compete? Disappointing not to see Nick and the Eureka stand though... A few of us intend doing something about the demos - we're planning a Zulus wars, Boxer rebellion and FPW games for next year.

    Well spotted John - the Mexicans of that period had virtually French uniforms - but the figures are actually Mexicans!

  5. Awesome looking game. Really like that Alamo setup.

  6. Wow, I'm truly impressed with you painting plans Doc. I look forward to the updates ... ummm ... going forward.

    von Peter himself

  7. good luck with the plans Doc, looking forward to seeing your game at Cancon next year, I think I will be putting on a 7YW game for the 250th annivesary or maybe even a 1813 game......Greg is working on his new Zulu wars game which will be very impressive!

    I ran a small Force on Force game this year at Cancon but only on the sunday. Lots of pics on my blog http://stormandconquest.blogspot.com.au/2012/01/cancon-2012.html