Monday, January 23, 2017

A Coat of Steel

On January 23, 2017, our monthly Craft Day was devoted to a Wars of the Roses wargame using the rules of The Perfect Captain: "A Coat of Steel". This is now the 3rd game we have played, the first 2 really being training sessions. I have been working to increase the size of both Yorkist and Lancastrian retinues using Perry 28mm figures and most recently, the excellent figures sold under the Crusader brand. The figures were painted by Leuthen Studios and Carl Robson with some by myself. The numerous flags are mostly by CitadelSix.

Jeff and I took the Yorkist cause and Will and Steve the Lancastrian. The photos are either by myself or, where noted by Steve. His own Blog can be found at:

This game was designed to maximise our experience of A Coat of Steel. I had fabricated some time ago all of the cards, counters and other parts and sleeved them where possible. 

Each side formed the maximum of four Wards each. The Companies within each Ward were composed according to the rules. The rules were studied in advance under the guidance of Jeff who sent out various links and study hints during the days leading up to the game. 

Although set-up is quite time consuming, once battle is joined the game moves quickly. In this game a bold Yorkist attack with the vaward and mainward on the opposing Lancastrian vaward and rearward looked promising. The first Lancastrian arrow-storm of light flight-arrows fell short in the centre. The Yorkist mainward under Warwick closed quickly on the forces of Northumberland and Somerset. Unfortunately the early death of Warwick caused Army morale ("the Cause") to decline and the Yorkists took higher losses in the melee.

The Set-Up
Drawing Chits to Determine Ward Activation
Battle Joined Between Warwick and Exeter (photo by Steve)
Henry Percy Holds the Right Center (photo by Steve)
Clifford (viewer right) Attacks a Weak Yorkist Vaward Under Fauconberg (viewer left)
(photo by Steve)
Lancastrian Vaward Under Pressure. Jeff's Archery Taking a Heavy Toll
(photo by Steve) 
Lancastrian Counter Attack (photo by Steve)
Lancastrian Archers (photo by Steve)
Percy Supported by French Mercenaries (photo by Steve)

Salisbury Brings up the Reserve Ward (photo by Steve)
The Yorkist Right Collapses (photo by Steve)
At close of play, a Lancastrian victory was declared. Henry VI looked on from a distance and mumbled his thanks for the good outcome.

Henry VI Looks on. Brocaded Coat of Royal Standard Bearer by Carl Robson
(photo by Steve)
A Coat of Steel is an unusual but excellent game system designed specifically for the Wars of the Roses and we recommend it highly.