JOS Featured Games - Lessies Moor and Salford 1642
In this final preview of what to expect at the JOS17, we present, not one but two English Civil War actions. To start proceedings we have what looks to be a wonderful Archers-themed offering from Andrew Brentnall:
‘Joy of Six 2017: An ECW excursion into Borsetshire
This all started when I attended JoS 2016 to put on a refight of Pharsalus using Simon Miller’s To the Strongest! Ancients rules.
I managed to deploy about 3,500 figures on a 6 x 4-foot table, the game was great, but more importantly, I had a blast. The show was tremendous, everyone so friendly, the games spectacular – I wanted to come back. But what to do? Well, the answer became increasingly obvious as the year went on. I was working with Simon on an ECW adaptation of his rules, and was developing scenarios to help in playtesting. One of those would be an obvious candidate. With Peter producing a new range of figures, it would be a great opportunity to show the cognoscenti that TtS! was for all scales, not just 28mm, and that TtS!: For King and Parliament was just the thing for 6mm ECW.
Just one problem; I didn’t have an ECW 6mm army, and Peter’s new range was still on the horizon. The idea slipped to the back of my increasingly cluttered mind. And there it rested until the run up to SALUTE, and Peter’s announcement that he was selling off his old, painted, ECW figures in preparation for his new armies. A few frenzied e mails, and I had the basis of a game for JoS 2017!
I chose a scenario that I had written myself, back in January, to test aspects of the rules. At the time, no historical battle that fitted my criteria came to mind, so I went with an entirely made-up scenario, and the war came to Borsetshire. The armies I bought from Peter provided 90% of the units needed- I only had to produce five more, and a table full of markers. Peter provided his usual Rolls Royce service, and I had no excuse not to get painting.
Next, I had to create a table. I already had one in 10mm, but it was too big,
so the process began again. I tried using the same mat as with the 10mms, but with little green dots in the centre of the boxes, and bases to show where the units would be but wasn’t entirely satisfied (photo 3 of early battlefield with marker bases). I then found a new mat, sold by Simon, with a 75mm grid, which was perfect. And it was on sale! A few hedges, a wood, a hill, and a small village, and Borsetshire was coming to life.
The scenario sees 21st century Archers characters transported back in time to the ECW. Nigel, Lord Pargetter, leads the Royalists, supported by the Archers and the Aldridges, Eddie Grundy leads the rebels, backed by ne'er do well Fairbrothers, Jazzer McCreary, Rob Titchener, and the Horrobins. The Royalists are reinforced by a flying column from Oxford, under the command of Prince Philip Frederick,
Rupert’s younger brother, and including two other even younger siblings. Philip Frederick has even ‘borrowed’ Rupert’s cornet for the occasion!
The field is chosen, the armies arrayed, the fates of Borsetshire, Lower Locksley, and Ambridge, hang in the balance. Where do your loyalties lie? Will you fight with Nigel for King and Church, or with Eddy, and his octogenarian father, Alderman Grundy, for no taxation (with or without representation) and free beer in the Bull? Come along, and decide the fate of Ambridge!'
This really does look a fun game, and I for one would be up for culling a few of Ambridge’s luminaries and then grabbing a beer at the Bull afterwards with the victors.
The second offering comes by way of the Baccus game, designed, presented and staged by Derek Pitman and his architect in chief, Paul Cramer.
You've heard of Beverly Hills 90210 right? Well, Salford 1642 is the same but older. It is the simple story of how the folk of Lancashire, aided by some local dignitaries and the odd German immigrant, defended their town against the evil designs of Lord Strange(love). And all in the year 1642.
On a more serious note this was major siege of the English civil War and its second major engagement, coming as it did the day after Powicke Bridge and several weeks before Edgehill. Although numbers involved were small around 1000 defenders and between 3-4000 attackers, it was a turning point in the conflict, securing Lancashire's most handsome town for Parliament.
As an event you can read about it online in the works of Broxhap and in the tireless efforts of Arthur Chappel, just google the siege of Manchester 1642. More importantly there exists a map of Manchester in the 1650s which allows us to get some idea of the appearance of the town including what was to become the Cathedral and Cheetham's School.
So the challenge was how to convert the above map into a 3d model/6mm wargame. “Simples,” you might say but at the time of writing there are over 250 small buildings crammed into a 4 foot square table and it is still not finished despite being started in April. There are churches, court buildings and fields, in fact a whole miniature town!
Rest assured that all will be done. It has to be! If you want to see the final product you will just have to come to Joy of Six. Anyway time to paint more houses.....
And there you have it. Over the past few weeks you’ve had a small snapshot of a few of the games that will be on show at the JOS. There are loads more booked in and the venue will be packed with tables to view and games to play.
Once again, the Joy of Six 2017 will be taking place on Sunday at Sheffield Hallam University from 10.00 to 4.00pm. Entry is just £3.00 and FREE if you declare yourself to be a 6mm sceptic.
See you there!