Sunday, April 30, 2017


Once again April 30th arrives on the calendar, and with it the 154th anniversary of the battle of Camerone.

I wish I had managed to organize a game on the day particularly as this year it lands on a Sunday, which might have made it relatively easy for lots of friends and fellow gamers to attend, but I am so busy with work and family that it was not to be.  

Still, I feel compelled to mark the occasion, and it turns out I have something new to post -- an AAR from my good friend Nick Stern...

A while back Nick was nice enough to send me this AAR, complete with some great photos of a smaller Camerone-style game he organized, GM-ed and played in up in the San Francisco Bay area, where he lives.

With the arrival of CAMERONE DAY, 2017, it seems fitting for me to get around to posting it.  One of these days -- perhaps next year? -- I will once again host a full-fledged 28mm refight of the battle, but for now I'm happy to be able to post Nick's battle report, which I sincerely thank him for sending my way:

Here are the photos from Nick's small in overall scale but extra-large in miniature scale Camerone game...

(see below!)

As you can see, some of the figures are very toy soldier-ish. I am tending to favor that look because the alternative is to go for all-out realism, which on 54mm figures can be crazy detailed.

The game started with ten legionnaires -- eight privates, one sergeant and one officer -- holding out against three (3) groups of five Mexicans, one each: (1) peasants, (2) dismounted irregular cav, and (3) regular infantry.

I ran the peasants as well as GM-ing.

As I had only two musket armed figures, I decided to sacrifice my three melee armed figures in a suicidal attack, while the infantry and cavalry were content to take pot shots from cover.

The legionnaires had a plus one in fire and melee combat so they took casualties at a slower rate than the Mexicans.

Halfway through the game the French had beaten the Mexicans to a standstill. So, to make things more interesting, I gave each Mexican player D6 reinforcements, results of which only totaled six more figures between us. But that was enough to tip the balance.

Meanwhile, the French were rolling a D20 each turn trying to reach 100 at which point I promised reinforcements. Toward the end, as the Mexicans came over the wall, I sent the French reinforcements in: five Chasseurs d'Afrique...

Unfortunately, they arrived too late to rescue the legionnaires, who had died to a man. 

There are several things I'd change, but over all it was a fun scenario!

Thursday, April 30, 2015


It's been almost a year since I've posted one word on this blog.  Honestly this is because what little hobby time I have available has all been devoted to working on the rather elaborate terrain for my November 6, 1879 Battle of Charasiab game, which I hope to complete in the near future, and whose consturction I've been intermittently chronicling over the passt few years over at

But Camerone Day lives on.

Today and tonight at Legion posts around the world, the modern-day spiritual descendants of the Company Danjou will commemorate the incredible accomplishment of those fifty men in the Hacienda de la Trinidad, where they fought for ten-hours against a total of two-thousand enemy soldiers and guerrilla fighters.  Despite all becoming casualties or prisoners, Company Danjou managed to accomplish their mission.  By tying up that vast number of enemy troops for the entire day, they prevented the gold convoy they were supposed to escort from being ambushed and taken by those same enemy forces.  If the Mexicans had one small field piece or mountain gun on hand or within reach, the battle would have gone very differently, but they didn't.  What Colonel Milan the Mexican commander and many of his officers and men did have, was an innate sense of decency, which led them to defend the handful of Legion survivors from the rage of their Mexican comrades, and treat them as honorable prisoners of war.

In honor of the memory of those men of the French Foreign Regiment (the Legion's official title back in 1863) as well their Mexican foes, both of whom stayed true to their missions despite almost unimaginable pain and suffering, I post these pics from the 150th Anniversary game we played on April 30th, 2013...