Friday, 27 January 2017

"The Pikeman's Lament" - Pike & Shot skirmishing from Osprey Games


One of the great things about the wargaming hobby is seeing friends and fellow wargamers enjoying fantastic success doing the very things which make our hobby such fun.  For many years I've been enjoying the excellent "Dalauppror" blog authored by Michael Leck, who I had the great pleasure and privilege of meeting at Salute a few years back.


Michael's rules for pike and shot wargaming, "The Pikeman's Lament", written with well-known wargames rules supremo Dan Mersey, were published yesterday by Osprey Games.  I'd pre-ordered my copy, and they were waiting for me when I arrived home last night.

They are a lovely looking set of rules, and feature everything that you would need for recreating small scale engagements and large skirmishes in the 17th Century.  There are many fine illustrations from the Osprey books, and some terrific photographs from many well-known wargamers and modellers, including Michael himself, the super-talented Matt Slade and all-round blogging superstar Mr. Michael Awdry, who posted some great photos on his own blog HERE which didn't quite make it into the finished rules owing to space constraints.



I'me really looking forward to giving these rules a try.  The "petite guerre" of raiding, forcing contributions, scouting and skirmishing was a major feature of many seventeenth century campaigns, particularly during the winter months when main field armies were in winter quarters.  




Michael and Dan's rules should be perfect for recreating these kinds of actions - swirling cavalry skirmishes, desperate last stands of small companies of soldiers in remote villages, plundering of supply columns.  These types of encounters were a very popular theme in mid-seventeenth century 'battle-paintings' - and there's plenty of inspiration to be gained from searching out paintings such as the above canvases from the Dutch artist Pieter Meulener.

I really looking forward to using the rules for my own chosen period of the 1680s in Flanders - a brief read through of the rules last night gave me some (hopefully) good ideas for the games we can stage and the terrain I can build for these kinds of actions.

Here's hoping these rules spark everyone else's imagination.  Congratulations to Michael and Dan, and best of luck with the venture!!

15 comments:

  1. Looked at these last night, will be using them with my ECW types, very nice photos and illustrations.
    Best Iain

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    1. Thanks Iain - I'm sure they'd fit perfectly with hundreds of ECW scenarios.

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  2. "Blogging superstar", are you sure? Lovely post Sir and like you I was thrilled to see Michael get his project off the ground. One thing that strikes me about Michael, apart from his great generosity of spirit, is his sheer enthusiasm for every aspect of the hobby. I imagine we may see more titles in the future.

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    1. Hehehe... Of course, I'm sure!!! Anyway, you're quite right about the rules and Michael's enthusiasm. Great to see you involved, and like you I'm looking forward to giving the rules a try.

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    2. Thank you Miichael for your very kind words:)

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  3. I'll be very interested to hear your opinion on these rules when you've playtested them! The artwork looks incredible.

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    1. Thanks Ed... and for sure, when I get around to playing them (in the Spring, most probably) I'll give them a review here.

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  4. Exellent writeup Sidney, thank you very much, i hope you are as pleased when you testet then out on the tabletop in the spring :)

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    1. Thanks so much, Michael! Very much looking forward to getting started on the rules when all my figures are done. Won't be long, hopefully!

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  5. My copy just arrived today! I'm pretty excited to try them out.

    (of course I seem to have acquired quite a collection of games over the last year - mostly from Osprey games - that I'm pretty excited to try out, but haven't seemed to find the time!?)

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    1. Hi Tim, thanks for the comment! Good luck trying the rules out!

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  6. Thanks for mentioning Pikeman's Lament, I'd probably have missed these rules for some time otherwise.

    I've played Lion Rampant and Dragon Rampant so the mechanics are familiar. The rules are easily adapted to fit many periods and skirmish or parts of larger battle scenarios. They are also a lot of fun.

    I'm pretty sure you will enjoy Pikeman's Lament when you have the opportunity to try them.

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    1. Hi Charles, great to hear from you, and many thanks for stopping by. Looking forward to giving the rules a road (or rutted, and slightly undulating, rural path) test in the Spring!

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  7. There I was happily painting ECW pikemen for these rules and then they went and published some exotic lists: including Samurai. Lost, lost all is lost, suddenly the japanese stuff I had been quietly collecting for years has a raison d'etre. Other than just looking pretty that is.

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