Sunday, 11 March 2018

The Little Wars Revisited 54mm Day in Woking

So yesterday saw the first Little Wars Revisited 54mm wargaming day, organised by Mike Lewis of Black Hat Miniatures. via the Little Wars Revisited forum.

As it was the first gathering numbers were a little low (including a couple of people who we'd expected but who didn't make it) but hopefully this will grow into something a bit bigger.  The idea of the day was to hold a number of games, and crucially, to make sure everyone's game got played: there's nothing worse than going to lots of effort to lay on a game only to find everyone is busy at the next table!

The venue was Christchurch in central Woking... a great venue with a really pleasant room at the top of the building and an excellent café.  The only downside for me was the extortionate parking charges in the car park down the road!

 There were 5 games staged in total:

 Mike put on his version of Bob Cordery's Portable Wargame.  Mike has designed this to complement his range of 54mm soldiers and it looks great...

More about the day on Mike's blog...

 There was a very impressive Napoleonic game staged by Eric Kemp which featured a model of La Haye Sainte featuring 10 000 individual roof tiles!!  Eric also fielded a huge number of individually based figures...

 Here's a link to Eric's blog with more info...

Brian Carrick put on a lovely looking Lion Rampant game featuring medieval armies slugging it out...

 ...and a link to Brian's blog...

Anthony Morton put on a lovely looking ECW game which I played in the afternoon.  We used The Pikeman's Lament rules which I don't think I've played was only when I got home that I realised I do actually have a copy on the bookshelf!

This was very much a game of 2 halves for me... on the right flank I successfully drove off the Parliamentarian commander and his cavalry unit and weakened the rest of his horse but sadly my infantry were shot to pieces by some well-coordinated enemy musketeers who proved very effective.

The Royalist cavalry enjoy their moment of victory, unaware that the rest of the army has run away!

 My pikemen march to their doom...

 These are 28mm scaled buildings but they work really well with 54mm figures...

Lastly my game was a North West Frontier skirmish using The Sword and the Flame rules.  It gave me a chance to finally field the figures I've been working on, with some help from Mike and Anthony lending some extra figures and Mike's terrain.  Brian was the victim...erm...willing volunteer to try the game out and as I've only played TSATF once before he was subjected to quite a bit of page flicking while I checked out particular rules.  Luckily TSATF is a pretty intuitive ruleset once you get going.

The scenario had a force of British troops attempting to relieve a unit holed up in a building at the other end of the table.  As expected the intervening ground was hoaching with hidden, angry Pathans waiting for a chance to drive off the infidel.

The Indian Cavalry advance...

It didn't take long to flush out some of the ambushers...

The British bravely charge the Pathans...

While a sneakily hidden gun surprises them...

...and after a very bloody fight one British soldier single-handedly wiped out half the Pathan unit and won the combat.  A VC for that chap I think!

 The Indian and Afghan cavalry clashed several times before the Pathans eventually gained the upper hand...

Unfortunately they then got a bit overconfident and attempted to ride down the British Artillery.  This was the result...

 The defenders of the outpost eventually sallied out to meet their rescuers and although the Afghans were able to capture the building the defenders were able to cut their way to freedom...

I'm still in 2 minds about's a nice simple system and quick to pick up (although I suspect I made a few errors) but it feels a bit dated and unsophisticated.  I think my choice for this kind of game would be The Men Who Would be Kings, which coincidentally (or not) Anthony and I will be playing in a couple of weeks.

So all in all a really great day and a brilliant chance to see some excellent examples of 54mm wargaming (and mine...) and to meet some really nice folk and make new friends.  Here's to the next one!


  1. Hi Alastair,
    Thanks for your excellent photos and report! I agree with you completely about TSATF. I have a gut feeling that I will prefer TMWWBK before I even played it.....!
    Best wishes

  2. A great looking day at what looks like a marvellous venue. Nice to see a variety of different painting styles, figures lying on their sides and the Airfix desert outpost!

  3. That all looks brilliant!
    well done to all concerned.
    I heard about this day too late to get involved, but if there's another one I'll do my best to persuade chum James to attend and bring our WW1 Oppy Wood 54mm game.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Fingers crossed the event will be repeated...the WW1 game sounds interesting.

  4. A great report and nice to see Matakishi in some photos, a thoroughly nice gentleman.

  5. Thanks for a great game Alastair, dated and unsophisticated rules are very much my level! just wish my pictures had come out as well as yours.

    1. Cheers's to the next one!

  6. That looks and sounds like a splendid day out!