Saturday 14 April 2018

Turning toy Soldiers into wargame figures : Romans 54mm

The battle of Ingilazi Yobhiya - 28mm Zulu vs British colonial game .

The battle of Ingilazi Yobhiya

A fictive Zulu wars battle.  Scenario made “on the spot”.

A British advance guard force  has taken position into an abandoned  boers settlement.

They are waiting for the bigger part of the army, which has a large supply convoy. 

The advance guard has fortified the settlement. The larger force has made up camp some distance away.

The Zulu army is also split in two. The larger force attacks the British advance guard.   The other part will try to keep the larger British force pinned to block them for coming to rescue the advance guard.

We used the “About Bonaparte”  Colonial extension.  The figures are 28mm and all figures are from Bart Smet. A British unit has 2 stands(4 figures), as in the rule. The Zulu units are made op of 8 stands (16 figures)instead of the 5 to 6 stands from the rulebook. This makes them significantly stronger, as they will ignore flags (not from artillery) unless they unit strength is halved. Also in close combat, there numerical superiority will be telling.   The British soldiers have a devastating fire power of 2 dice per figure up to 20cm,1 op to 40cm. Artillery has a larger range, and flags will reduce the distance a Zulu unit can cover.  The large British force has 3 lancer units and 3 units of auxiliary  local warriors.

Advance guard : Siegfried 1 medium gun, 1 gatling gun, 3 units of dismounted cavalry, 3 of dismounted scouts, 8 British regulars ,
Main British Force 1:  Patrick (camp part : 3 units of lancers, 3 of Natal Natives, 6 of British regulars, 2 medium guns , 1 gatling). 
Main British Force 2:   Dirk (Convoy:  9 units of British regulars, one light gun).
Zulu army 1 : Mark  18 units of 8 stands, one skirmish unit with rifles.
Zulu army 2 : Alex  12 units of 8 stands, one skirmish unit with rifles.

The game started with the Brits alarmed by the view of Zulu units. With the hills close by, the Zulu were already very near.  The advance guard artillery couldn’t do much and was quickly overrun.

On the other side of the table, Alex first probed with a unit. Patrick deployed his cavalry forward and then decided to retreat them to the hills on the other side.  A horrible mistake, the Zulu units falling on them in the rear. One lancer unit destroyed, the breakthrough  catching one of the artillery guns.
Suddenly, the Zulu units were among the tents of the camp, the regulars dispersed, without organized resistance, their line of fire blocked by their own tents.

At the boers settlement, the Zulu were held up at one side, the open ground used by the scouts and dismoutend cavalry to unleash their firepower, on the other side, the regulars had taken cover into the buildings, while  the barricade was overrun. The building didn’t help them much as their advantage in firepower was lost in close combat. 

Now Alex charged in on the column tying to go for the other side of the table. Luckily for me , most of the men could escape to the ridge of the nearby hill where the second group  stopped  making progress, to face this wave of Zulu warriors .

At the settlement Zulu’s were entering the buildings. The British force over here was closing on breaking point.

At the camp, somehow, the British regulars were managed to slow down the Zulu charge, and the Natal Native units perforce much better than expected. The convoy British units had by now a firing line and unleashed a devastating fire on the nearby Zulu units, too much dispersed by now.  An isolated British unit was overrun, but close to the ridge , the Zulu, notwithstanding the success of capturing part of the supply column, were getting decimated.  The remaining lancers charged in. Yet that Zulu unit proved to be a hard nut to crack,  destroying the leading lancer units.

The British situation at the camp started to be under control,  than came the news the settlement had fallen, only a few men escaped the onslaught.  

It was a Zulu victory, as there plan had worked out. At some moment, it seemed to go to a total victory, both British forces destroyed, but somehow, we survived.  Only downside for the zulu was the hughe amount of casualties it had cost.