Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy WSS 114

Wargaming is a big hobby with many diverse factions and perspectives: striking a balance that pleases everyone can be truly challenging! We like to think what sets Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy apart from other historical wargaming magazines is its focus on having fun, no matter what kind of wargamer you are or what your background is. WS&S is a light-hearted publication, that pays particular attention to games themselves and how to play them: it doesn’t get bogged down in lengthy historical expositions or recycle content you can read yourself in any history book. While popular periods like WWII, the Napoleonic era, and the ancient world get frequent coverage, we also try to feature the unexpected, with articles on spies, monsters and gangsters to name but a few.

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Karwansaray Publishers
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1 min

“The Red Army began the war with the great advantage of possessing the T-34, a model far superior to any tank on the German side … The Russian tank designers understand their job thoroughly; they cut out refinements and concentrated on the essentials – gun, power, armour and cross-country performance.”– Friedrich von Mellenthin Like many players before me, I have been fascinated by German armour and in particular the Panther, the Tigers, and their variants. However, the truth behind these so-called superweapons is always more interesting than the myths that have grown up around these great cats. It is often said that perfection is the enemy of good enough. This is certainly true of German tank designs of World War Two. While Soviet designers went for basic designs that could be easily…

17 min
miniature reviews

Tercio characters Company: 1898 Miniaturas Size: 28mm ‘foot to eye’ or 31mm tall; cavalry stands 46mm tall Era: Late 16th to early 17th century (Thirty Years’ War) Price: €6.50 for one mounted character; €9.50 for four command models www.1898miniaturas.com The Spanish company 1898 Miniaturas has released foot command and mounted characters for its 16th-century Tercios range. The cavalry miniature shown is Ambrogio Spinola, inspired by the painting The surrender of Jülich by Jusepe Leonardo. Other characters include Juan José of Austria, Cardinal-Infante Don Fernando, and a generic general with coronet standard. Alongside Spinola is a drummer from the Tercio command set two (each consists of a leader, sergeant with halberd, ensign, and drummer). The company also has a range of flags, at €1.50 per flag. The sculpting and casting on these are very good with no…

8 min
the making of an umpire

With sport, our games will begin on a familiar playing area, usually one structured in such a way that the pitch is symmetrical, providing both players with an equal chance of success. The men and women playing the game are almost universally conversant with the rules; they know the relevance of the penalty box or the 25-yard line. In such circumstances, the role of the umpire is not to ensure that people know the rules, but rather that they don’t break them. In a wargame, neither of these assumptions apply. Fortunately, almost all wargames are played on battlefields that are asymmetrical. One day you may be battling across the steppes of Russia in 1812, another fighting your way up the beaches of Normandy in 1944, and the next leading a legion…

4 min
the men poured in a deadly volley

As the lead elements of Forrest’s column drew level with a large tree next to the road, the federal troops unleashed a deadly volley, which resulted in the death of several men and horses. The cavalry retreated to the nearest ridge to the north, leaving a small detachment to cover their withdrawal. According to some chroniclers, the retreat was covered by four dismounted troopers who were captured during the ensuing firefight. The federal troops reformed behind the iron and wood fence around the cemetery, where they were charged by Forrest; they repelled the charge, leaving a few more dead and wounded on the road. Forrest then brought up three artillery pieces, which had previously been captured from the Union forces, and ordered his men to begin shelling the federal positions around…

10 min
killing alexander!

At Issus, Darius hoped to trap Alexander’s cavalry into a difficult crossing but Alexander dismounted and led his hypaspists over the stream. He was wounded but opened the way for the cavalry to lead a decisive charge. At Granicus, the Persian cavalry attempted to overwhelm the Macedonian cavalry and Alexander was bloodied and stunned, but able to gather himself as the battle rolled on. At the siege of Gaza, a ballista bolt hit Alexander square in the shield and penetrated into his shoulder. He recovered, exacting a terrible revenge. The next year, at Gaugamela, Darius tried to overwhelm Alexander with massed cavalry, chariots, and war elephants, but none of them came close to knocking out Alexander, who once again cut through the Persian line. Darius fled, only to be assassinated…

11 min
the last day of st elmo’s

Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent prepared to launch the largest amphibious invasion of the age and attack Malta. He was determined to end the depredations of the knights, and to open a path of conquest to southern Europe. Warned of impending attack, the Knights of Malta worked feverishly to strengthen and prepare their fortifications and gather reinforcements from all over Europe. The response was tepid at best, but some contingents of troops, predominantly Spanish and Italian, arrived to bolster the defenders. Most of Europe was represented in some unit by volunteers. The Knights of Malta were led by the very capable Jean Parisot de Valette. Under his unified authority, the Hospitallers organized a highly cohesive defence of Malta, with around 500 knights, a couple of thousand soldiers, including Spanish, Italian, German, and French…