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News from a wargamer with a special interest in the military history of the Balkans. It mainly covers my current reading and wargaming projects. For more detail you can visit the web sites I edit - Balkan Military History and Glasgow & District Wargaming Society. Or follow me on Twitter @Balkan_Dave
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Thursday 14 March 2024

Scottish civil wars 1638-52

 My current (well, one of many!) project is to expand my 15mm English Civil War, or more accurately, the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, armies to Scotland and Ireland. I have started with the Covenanter army and plan to move on to the Royalist forces led by Montrose. Finally, Irish armies will cover the less well-known actions mainly fought in Ulster.

The core army mostly comes from the Essex range, latterly supplemented by Peter Pig. It includes three units of pike & shot, one commanded shot, two horse units and two units of lancers. I have also completed four units of Highlanders, which will work for Montrose as well.

The foot units are the typical 2:1 ratio between shot and pike, although as the uniforms are the same, I can have more commanded shot or pike-heavy units as required. 

The Essex lancers are a bit too well equipped for my liking, although the units that fought in England did come home with looted kit and better horses. I have bought a few packs of Peter Pig lancers, which I think will look more like the part.

I will use the artillery and dragoons from my ECW armies as well.

With excellent timing, To the Strongest has brought out two supplements for the period for use in the For King & Parliament rules. The first provides nine scenarios for Montrose's battles. The other is a guide to wargaming the battles in Scotland and Ireland, The Celtic Fringe. This includes optional rules for the different troop types.

I also have the option to play these battles using the Warlord Pike and Shotte rules and Pikeman's Lament

A rare treat this evening is a midweek game. We are starting with a Bishops' War game - Covenanter v English using FK&P. 77 points a side.


  1. Marvellous parade and a great set-up for the game. Report to follow, I trust?!
    Regards, James

    1. I have a few Bishops' Wars scenario games planned over the next ten days, along with much painting. Also to get up to scratch with FK&P. First was last night which went well. I'll do a round up of the games and how FK&P works at the end.

  2. Just started on a similar project. I was suckered in by the freebie sprue of Warlord Epic scale Covenanters in WI last year. They are apparently quite compatible with PP etc.

    1. That's interesting because that sprue was partially responsible for me starting this project. I got as far as priming the sprue before abandoning the idea. While bigger than the Napoleonics they are still noticeably smaller than Essex and Peter Pig. They are also difficult to cut into smaller bases, which is fine if you only play Pike & Shotte rules, but I want to play FK&P as well. Finally, while I understand the commercial reasons, I just don't like the uniformity. The sculpts are nice though.

  3. Nice set-up you have 👏👏 I tend to play games with smaller numbers of figures and, wherever possible, I like to have plenty of variation in the figure poses.
    The old Gladiator Games ECW figures are rather nice - they have a hint of a cartoonish look about them, but paint up well. They’re available from Fighting 15s but unfortunately their website has only a couple of images of the ECW range.