A discursive look at Napoleonic & ECW wargaming, plus a load of old Hooptedoodle on this & that

Thursday, 7 February 2019

Rapid Fire for Rookies...

Yesterday I made the trip up to the part of Scotland which is known as Perth & Kinross - a title which is not exactly concise, and which probably isn't very traditional either, but at least it's unambiguous. The occasion was a visit to Schloss Goya, the home of the famed Count. I had a splendid trip on the bus, and arrived in time for coffee and a quick viewing of the regiment of Bavarian Chevauxlegers which the Count is very kindly painting for me. Great stuff - I am confident these chaps will be ready to show here very soon. The advantages of getting Goya to help me with painting work are twofold: (1) I don't have to paint them myself, and (2) the quality of the painting is definitely superior!

German force advance out of the low sun of morning - my two Panthers are on the left flank, advancing as slow as necessary to allow the accompanying infantry company to keep up
He was kind enough to lay on a very fine lunch, and in the afternoon we had a bash at a WW2 game he had set up - a small encounter action between German and Russian forces, racing to seize a crossroads. It was the very first WW2 miniatures game I have ever taken part in, and the rules we used were Rapid Fire for Rookies, the two-page babies' version of RF, as befits my experience level. I was the German commander; I'll not attempt to give a coherent narrative, since I had very little idea what was going on most of the time, and I must apologise for the very poor photos, taken with my iPhone. I took a great many more pictures, but most were blurred and horrible. I must also emphasise that the game did look rather better than this sketchy post might suggest! I wasted a lot of time in admiring the 20mm figures - this is all new to me.

Overall view of my "left hook" with the Panthers - heavy weapons group heading into the woods in the middle
I regret to say that this is the only photo of the Russians which was clear enough to make out - this taken from a spotter plane early on. I suspect that it was fear which caused the camera-shake. As you see, the old Russkis are very keen on straight lines
I was pleased to get my tanks into this position so quickly...
...but instantly one of them was knocked out...
...and immediately afterwards my only gun was also kaput - my full repertoire of German swear words proved inadequate (obviously something I'll have to work on)
So my surviving Panther went off on a tour of the battlefield which eventually put paid to all the opposition's armour, and also eliminated a lot of his infantry
My infantry trying to keep up with the advance
Mostly because I wondered what would happen, I sent a single soldier with a Panzerfaust to take on a Russian self-propelled gun which was causing problems. He missed, and you only get one shot with a Panzerfaust. That's what happened...
The unstoppable Panther continued on its tour, mopping up resistance...
Though I suffered almost as many infantry casualties as the enemy, I won on points, as they say in boxing, and I was definitely in control of the crossroads. Very interesting little game - I enjoyed it, but I sincerely hope I don't get promoted on the strength of it
I had a lot to think about on the bus back to Edinburgh. Another grand day out!


  1. Its been nearly 20 years since I've played Rapid Fire. We played using 54mm plastics of course, its good to have things in the same scale, that way you can just pick up a few things and use existing terrain......

  2. Mein Gott vot a wunderbar game! Interesting Napoleonic style deployment of the Russians?

  3. It has been many years since I played Rapid Fire....the games we played were always entertaining,your game certainly looked like a lot of fun...

    All the best. Aly

  4. Gosh, really your first WW2 figures game.. Airfix figures and tanks and Charles Grant 'Battle' was where it all started for me. Obviously a natural tank commander, I see..

  5. Thank you gentlemen - yes, my very first experience of WW2. I've seen demo games at shows etc, but never really paid much attention. One thing that surprised me was how small 1/76 scale figures are when they're based singly when you're used to rectangular blocks of brightly coloured chaps in shakos. Trying to find all the constituent bits of a mortar crew, or identify the bloke in the company with the Panzerfaust, is tricky under pressure!