Sunday, 3 July 2016

The Tersey Campaign

“Woo”-ful Conduct - the opening battle of the River Tersey Campaign

The year is 1642.  England is under civil war.  While the great armies of the King and Parliament battle for supremacy, in the corners of the country, the lesser lords on the borders of the contested shires conduct raids and skirmishes not for any political basis, but for regional deputes and personal grudges.  In this it matters little who is for the King or not.
The River Tersey Campaign is a fictional account using the Pike and Shot version of the popular rules “Lion Rampant”

Lord Calway had gathered his small force of cuirassiers, with Lord Brooke’s purple clad units of Shot and Pike, and Longe’s musketeers.  After a day of leisurely march, these were spread along the road north.  Calway himself, had foolishly galloped ahead to the Manor at the bridge over a tribuary of the Tersey to woo the Manor’s daughter, a most comely girl, escorted only by his horsemen.
The wooing

Brooke's Shot and Pike units
Earl of Rockforth, hearing from his informants of Calway’s plans, had gathered a mounted force of his heavies, Urry’s harquebusiers and a unit of dragoons.  His plan was to drive his heavies at the cuirassiers supported by the dragoons while Urry takes the ford to the east and circles around to entrap Calway’s forces having crossed the stream.
Earl of Rockforth's advance

His lightening assault caught Calway and his forces totally unawares. Scared witless, reports differ whether it was Calway or the girl, they were, nevertheless,  long in getting to his sedan chair and to safety - very poor activation dice!
Lord Calway's activation roll to safety...... 

 Meanwhile, his cuirassiers did their best to form up while the cuirassiers bore down upon them.  They let off a volley of pistol fire which did little to halt the charge and Rockforth’s horse did great execution and they lost nearly half their contingent in the sword play. They held only briefly as the very bold swordmen  (rolling two 6’s for activation!) continued to chase them and their Lord’s slow moving sedan chair which they overtook and thus the shaken couple taken captive personally by Rockforth.
....meanwhile Rockforth's heavies are gleeful with swords ready for the attack

...and with 4+ do great execution 

The dragoons dismounted on the hillock overlooking the bridge and exchanged shots with Longe’s musketeers.  Soon, Brooke’s Shot also positioned themselves and the dragoons now outnumbered, were shot up and out of the fight.
no shooting for these boys this turn!

While all this was occurring, Urry’s gallop to the ford continued well until he reached the ford.  His progress was halted for many minutes. (two successive failed activation rolls! -  the water must have been deeper than anticipated?)

His attack’s surprise was alerted by the stampede of cows in his path  {ed note: I had that morning based up some cow models and placed them on the table as “eye candy”  Little that I knew they would serve within the game itself.} {further ed note: I have even seen activation and movement rules for sheep! Apparently they can be used to distract those units with 'Wild Charge' characteristics LOL.  I used a roll of 5+ for these cows to activate a stampede and thus a warning.  They did.
the bovines of note

Despite the warning by the bovines , the surprise was still evident by the immediate lack of activation by the Brooke’s Pike who failed to move to prevent the horsemen’s attack.  Of course, this failure also meant the musketeers could not lessen the impact and great slaughter ensued aided by remarkable dice rolling by my part.  Longe’s musketeers were to half strength and failed to rally. Brooke’s Shot, having not the sense to run (having passed (!) their courage test despite the armies’ losses) so Urry’s boys had a good day chopping up musketeers. (see photo below with the spectacular dice throw).  Now only the Pike were left to run away. 
the roll of Urry's horse vs the musketeers.  All but the one counts as a hit! 5 thus killed in one round of combat. 
The view of the battlefield

So ended the first battle of the Tersey Campaign using my very old collection of Foundry ECW/TYW - a mixed breed this range! - painted c.1988-1990.  It had languished in boxes for many years with a half hearted rebasing each time I thought to find a ruleset I liked.  Either they wanted more figures than I had or in a different organization. As the collection is some 26 years old and with old varnish and a very different painting style, I cannot now make changes - my OCD is very “same-ness” orientated!  With ‘Lion Rampant’ and the pike and shot versions, I could arrange the units to make a very nice ‘retinues’.  This was the first go at the rules and I enjoyed the results.  The campaign will continue sporadically in the near future.
no animals were harmed in the making of this game.....(home-made sty)


  1. Sounds like fun though the poor attackers seem to have cursed dice all game


    1. Certainly Lord Calway's units, and indeed the man himself, did not fair well in this battle. Very much one-sided dice luck.
      But it was certainly fun game, lopped sided as it was.
      Good of you to comment.

  2. Doug,

    Great looking game and AAR! I'm afraid my 26 year old P&S figures wouldn't stand a chance!

    I take it you like the Pike and Shot version of Lion Rampant? Is this your work or is the P&S version available somewhere else?

    Thanks for the fun report.


    1. while Dan Mersey author of LR will be publishing his P&S Osprey rules next year, I thought these found at :
      are quite good with only minor but effective changes for the period.
      Got me to revamp rather than sell these old figures. I still like them so happy for this.

  3. Very nice, Doug! Great looking figs and terrain as always. Glad to hear you're using LR (or a version of it). I really like the rules, not only for the simple yet elegant mechanics, but also the relatively low number of figures needed for a game.

    1. Indeed. You state the very reasons for my interest.
      Thanks again for the note.