Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sudan 1884/85 - Black Powder Game

On Saturday and Sunday of last weekend Andrew Parr and myself came head to head in the Sudan. Andrew played the British one day and I the next day. The scenario we used was a simple besieged town, garrisoned by poorly trained Egyptian troops and a few Europeans. They were short of supplies, ammunition and courage. Around them were swarm's of Mahdi's followers - "More then the grains of sands contain in all the deserts of the world". But at the other end of the table were the professional trained but sometimes rashly lead British forces. Their mission as you might of guessed was to relieve the garrison with supplies, deliver fresh troops and bring the Europeans back safely to Cairo.

Egyptian Troops man the defences while a British manned light gun helps to keep the Sudanese at bay.

The relief force is on it's way.

Artillery crew lay their guns on suspect enemy locations in preparation for a mad charge from Beja tribesmen.
The rules Andrew and I followed for the first time were Warlord Games 'Black Powder'. In the first game we started a little slow as Andrew and I were learning the rules on the run. But as the game progressed the rules flowed easier with each turn. Though by the second game (on the Sunday) we basically just went off the quick play sheet, with only limited referencing of the rules. In the end we were very happy with how the rules played and the feel it gave to Colonial wargaming, which we quite enjoyed. The restrictions of only six turns limited each player from poo-fluffing around and forced us to take action on each consecutive turn. This made for a quick and enjoyable game with a result at the end. To conclude I would recommend the rules to anyone who enjoys a little fun on the far reaches of the Empire. Our next game using Black Powder will be Napoleonic's in late April, so I will keep you posted on how that goes.

Troops nervously advance.

Ansar riflemen on the right of the British square start a continuous fire.

Ansar on the left flank do the same.
The British Commander reacts and sends up his skirmishers to clear the hill.

Only to discover more the expected lay behind the hill - Screaming Beja tribesmen by the hundreds.

With cries of "God is Great" and 'Oh! Beloved!" on they charged.

The battle was fierce and manly were slain on both sides by bullet, spear and sword.

But with three gallant charges by the 10th Hussars they manage to keep the road open for the supplies to get through.

Readily needed supplies make it into the town.


Docsmith said...

Now you're talking! The set-up and figures look superb - the Gatling guns & crews evidence of Leroy's sublime painting skills? Terrific pictures - look forward to the battle report and evaluation of the Black Powder rules. Hope you managed to save Gordon from those fanatic 'sheet-heads'!


Hetairoi said...

Wow, this is... wow...

Donogh said...

I'll vote "Wow!" as well
Super looking game - figures painted up amazing well (as usual)

blucher said...


Would like to have seen a thin red line but apart of that its all very nice.

Pat G said...


Is it "Black Power" or "Black Powder"? I was half expecting some 1960's radicals.

Mad Carew said...

I have to agree with Hetairoi.. WOW!

Christopher(aka Axebreaker) said...

Wonderful stuff!


DeanM said...

Man, you guys have the nicest terrain and figures. Must be the upside of being lonely :)! Dean

Vinnie said...

Hey Guys,

Thanks for the comments. Sorry Black Powder rules were used. Most ofthe figures were painted by Scott Robertson using the Army Pianter system. Leroy painted the guys in red and I just painted a few of the oppersition. The terrain was put together by Scott and myself. However the matting I purchased through the Terrain Mat website.

Thanks again


Bluewillow said...

lovely mate, does black powder have a variation movement for the Mahdists(like Carlo's rules)?

Scott done a good job on those figs, I haven't played Sudan for 12 years at least, I think we will add it to our gaming weekend.


legatus hedlius said...

Beautiful looking game. Very interested to hear that the rules worked well for Colonials. How many figures, roughly, did you have a side? It seems that you need quite a lot for Black Powder.