As in previous years the Sunday after the Phalanx show at St Helens an all-day game is organised by Steve. This year it is a colonial game, set in the Sudan. Previously we have used the "Sword and the Flame" rules but they become rather slow when dealing with several players and lots of units. This led Steve and I to try out the "Battles for Empire" rules. It required some re-basing, but this had the advantage (?) of increasing the number of Dervish units.
On the opposite flank the Egyptians were faced by a horde of Dervish cavalry and the Egyptian cavalry rather foolishly (mea culpa) charged the leading unit. In no time the remnants of the Egyptians were streaming back towards the base line. Unfortunately, they didn't 'stream' quickly enough and were caught by the Dervish cavalry which followed up. First blood to the Dervish.
Another good feature is the reduced effectiveness of the final volley by defenders as the enemy close,perhaps reflecting the morale effect of not stopping the charge.
Artillery is used to 'unsettle' the enemy rather than kill. It is the machine guns which are more effective in that role. Though again, a clever rule mechanism means that the more fire the machine guns lay down the greater the chance of a 'jam'. (I found the guns fell silent after last ditch attempts to stop Dervish charges and had to wait nervously for the jams to be cleared).
19th May, Northamptonshire
7 hours ago