Tuesday, 19 April 2011

More Rebs and Brigade command stands.

I have completed the 25 figure (500 man) Reb unit. 5 bases of 5 figures, I like the way JR2 uses a standard 5 bases with different numbers of figures, but it does rule out using other rule sets. I then decided to improve my command stands for brigades as you can see. I doubt that I will take this project beyond the Division per side stage as I want to follow up with Peter Pigs excellent AWI range.

Following up with a 25 figure Union regiment next but I'm also working on terrain items, more of that later. 150 figures painted so far so its going well.

(Note: the terrain tile is 25mm scale, I use it for my photographs which are taken in my 'light box' under a mixture of warm white and daylight 'blue' bulbs).

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Breechloaders in JR II.

I have quickly finished my 15 figure unit of 'Berdans Sharpshooters'. I painted these as a change from painting blue and grey, but also to add some variation into my planned games. Johnny Reb II are regimental level rules of course and as such feature a lot of detail at this level. Breechloaders are given the following advantages in the rules:

  • When firing prone, they fire at full effect (not quarter effect as for muzzle loaders)
  • They always receive an 'up 1 row shift' on the small arms firing chart to reflect increased rate of fire.
  • Their 'cover save roll' for fences and low walls is increased by 1 (to reflect the fact that they did not have to stand to reload).
  • When in skirmish order or 'extended line' the save throw is also increased by 1.
In addition units that are designated 'sharpshooters' also get advantages even if not armed with breechloaders. (A number of Confederate units were also designated 'sharpshooters' although armed with the standard rifle-musket):
  • When skirmishing their fire multiplier is x1 not x 1/2.
  • Units fired on by sharpshooters have their final save roll number reduced by 1.

Having been lucky enough to handle and fire a repro Sharps breechloader I know that its possible to stay much lower when loading compared with my trusty old .58 Enfield. To load the Enfield when kneeling required sliding the butt way behind you in order to reach the muzzle, then dragging it forward again to fit the cap etc. Although my Enfield was sold on a few years ago and I no longer hold the required shotgun certificate, the handling and firing of black powder weapons gives a useful insight into understanding wargame rules mechanisms I feel.

Pictures show the completed sharpshooters and an 1859 model Sharps rifle. I am now working on a 25 figure Confederate regiment, 5 bases of 5 figures.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Next up .... 1st US Sharpshooters.

I have now completed 2 Confederate infantry regiments and a 2 section 12lb smoothbore battery, plus a mounted general (brigade commander). So I only need to paint a couple more units per side to have 2 full brigades with which to run through a small Johnny Reb scenario. The first JRII game I ever played was the 'Pitzers Run' scenario included with the rules, just a couple of units per side but enough to get me hooked on the rules back then.

Next I'm going to paint a 300man (15 figure) unit of 1st US Sharpshooters (Berdans). 5 bases each of 3 figures. I must confess to having a special regard for this unit because I wore the splendid green uniform myself for a couple of years, having transferred from the 42nd Pennsylvania Vols, and already a veteran of many re enactment battles. I recall giving my measurements to the sutler and then waiting several months over winter before picking it up and trying it on. The frock coat was so comfortable to wear, not at all as I had imagined, if a little warm in summer! Great bunch of people, it was a pleasure to serve with them, and great to see that Captain Dave Parkin and his 'boys' are still going strong as members of ACWS . I have added a separate link to this regiment.