|The valley from the Welsh perspective|
The table represented the valley - dotted with buildings, fields and defence works, hemmed in by rough hills and with the river and a railway line running along its length. The royalists' aim was to advance along the length of the table and roll up the Welsh barring their path.
'Captain Bigglesmay', 'Ciderfella' and I took the role of the royalists, while Giles, ‘Swiper Esq.', Tym, and some of his chums played the Welsh nationalists.
The aim of the day was to try out the 'Went the Day Well?' rules in anticipation of the next Evesham Big Game. While ‘WTDW?’ is designed for platoon level (30-40 figs approx.) games, we played here with much bigger formations (over 100 figs per player). Tym also introduced a fog of war element borrowed from the Principles of War rules, in which each platoon was initially represented by a large piece of card. The opposing player had to successfully 'spot' this card to reveal the actual formation and put figures on the table (with an automatic reveal when the formation closed in on said opponent). Each side also had some 'phantom' cards, which would reveal nothing if successfully spotted.
|Note the 'fog of war' cards|
The Herefordian forces took the right flank and consisted of a platoon of BUF (2 infantry units, HMG, RASE motorised unit, tank busters, armoured car and command), a Blackshorts platoon (3 infantry, HMG, anti-tank rifle, 2 improvised armoured vans and command), volunteer famers (2 shotgun units and 2 groups of scarecrow protestors, 1 with firearms) and a platoon of militia (3 infantry, an improvised armoured van and 'Roaring Meg'). I also had the use of an armoured train, the arrival of which I had to dice for at the start of each round.
|The BUF advance|
|Blackshorts advance amid the wreckage|
|Armoured train arrives while the farmers deploy|
Back on my right flank, the BUF occupied the vacated defence works while the scarecrows began to clamber up the valley side. The Welsh had somewhat reformed and presented a formidable second defence line, with HMGs, artillery and mortars (perhaps my opponent wasn't so dissatisfied after all!). Luckily the BUF advance was aided by a heavy fog (event card) which reduced visibility and thus dampened the fire of the Welsh big guns.
|The Welsh withdraw to new positions|
In the centre, the Blackshorts were exchanging lively fire with the Welsh in the trenches and adjoining building. With supporting fire from the train and roaring Meg (which, after two misfires, scored a direct hit on the building!), the nationalists' backbone began to crumble. By now the Blackshorts finally had the Salopian support they required to press their advantage, with a veritable horde of GPO units crossing the bridge to engage the centre.
|The central defences bombarded|
Charging the trenches
While the Catholics, save the occasional mortar shot from the Welsh, were still in the dark about the composition of their foe and continued to probe along the left flank, on the other flank the BUF and farmers began to shoot up the Welsh from their new positions. The Welsh HMGs were quickly silenced, while the farmers and scarecrows kept the artillery occupied with a largely inaccurate fire while their comrades continued to gather for a new assault.
Dealing with the 2nd line
|The trenches are captured|
|The Welsh withdraw|