Picking up those brushes again.

Hi and welcome to the occasional mutterings of Dave Doc, a military modeller and some time gamer. Gaming and model making has given me a real education, History & Geography(obvious really), Artistry, Politics, Economics, Logistics, Project Management -you try building miniature armies without the last 3.

I will use the blog to record my creations & the odd occasion I actually do some gaming.

I have always been inspired by the aesthetic side of gaming. Playing on well constructed terrain using excellently painted units is always a joy.

Monday 3 June 2019

Normandy 44. Hitting the beach..

Today saw the culmination of the effort to recreate the D-Day invasion at Utah Beach and the paradrops inland by the 101st Airborne around St Marie du Mont and Brecourt Manor.

There were 7 of us from the Old Guard mob along with a couple of visitors from the friends network - we met up on Saturday night for a meal and chat too - good times

 Martin who had command of Easy company has his write up here...I expect his medals are in the post 

Uncle Red Beach

James and I were playing Germans - James had the beach and entry to the causeways to defend. including  the inland sections of flooded fields and the two causeways leading across. There are hamlets at the inland end causeways and roads lead on to  Brecourt Manor with its gun battery and then on the other side the village of St Marie du Mont - the ultimate allied objective for the day. The table worked out at 17 feet long by 6 foot wide.

The beach end would start with a naval bombardment followed by 3 waves of bombers - as on the actual day these proved accurate and effective.

P47s look for targets of opportunity

behind the beach is a flooded lowland area - vehicles have to use the causeways

B26 Marauder squadron pummel the defences 

Inland the game would start with para drops on the two DZ's . Each aircraft had to test DZ accuracy , then height and speed. 6 paper marker then placed on the wings of the C47 model and then they hit by a small fan and blowing on them - you can see the video of this on Martins blog.

The most inland DZ west of St Marie du Mont where the drop encountered trees and one  plane load scattered right to the town taking casualties. 

the shocked garrison looks up with trepidation!  photo credit Angus Wallace

the defences have  been pummelled

The infantry cross the beach heading for these wall. The DD's provide support , but remain blocked until the engineers clear a patch 
Air support arrives

Airstrikes target AA and AT guns at the end of the causeway - the quad 20 lived a charmed life !

Martins para hit Brecourt Manor quickly - knocking the guns out over a few turns 
the beach defences are eventually breached - the build up of forces continues apace

inland the paras have been struggling attacking St Marie du Mont which has been reinforced by a veteran FJ  platoon too. 

Both para commanders were beginning to rack up heavy casualties as German MG teams took their toll. Shouts down the table of hurry up! were heard,

unhelpfully the navy shelled causeway no3 by mistake which would slow down the vehicles . , but infantry were making their way through the flooded fields 
the paras have captured the landing zone - glider reinforcements arrive 
The naval observer had found a prime viewpoint and large amount of shellfire began arriving - thinking the last of the germans and combined with a fresh para assault saw the village fall just as the tanks got their too.

It was a great game. it had a good balance of challenge for the allied players - its not a game the germans will win - its about how well they can delay the allies overall.

Thanks must go to James and Martin who contributed to the build up for this with time , effort and ideas - thanks lads.

some things to do for its next run out - non essential , but all nice to have :-
More flooded field sections
More flight stands
More explosion markers and smoke
82nd Airborne platoons
Another LCT or two
3 more assault platoons

this sees the start of a campaign ladder for my US forces in Normandy

Saturday 1 June 2019

Normandy 44 - Eve of invasion Utah Beach.

Tomorrow will see our D Day game. It’s been a project in the making for 18 months for me , with a lot of work over the last 6 months focusing on the beach  and it’s great to see it come to fruition. James and Martin have been great partners in encouraging the madness and adding their own contributions too . . The table will be large , it’s  16x6 for a 15mm game , we have a decent number of gamers roped in as well . It will indeed be the Longest Day .

It feels appropriate on the eve of the actual 75th anniversary to pause a moment or two to remember those involved in those historic events and to recognise the price that peace comes at. It’s sometimes referred to as the greatest generation , I think there may be something in that  , So thank you .

The table is set