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The Italian Wars

The Italian Wars – Playing the Period

I really love this period. One of the first Osprey books I ever wrote was Pavia 1525. I studied Italian Renaissance history at university, and my Masters dissertation was about Renaissance artillery -albeit guns used at sea. However, my actual foray into the wargaming of the Italian Wars was recent. Like so many projects, it

The Merano Ambush, 1524

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm For weeks, German Michael (aka “Mad Micha”) has been wanting to run a Renaissance game. He loves them, especially if they involve lots of landsknechts. He normally prefers a battle fought on a flat and featureless plain, but this time I talked him into doing something a bit

The Battle of Agnadello, 1509

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm Have you ever seen a game set out and your heart sinks, because you know you’re in for a turkey shoot? Well, this was one of those games! This week we were refighting the Battle of Agnadello, fought in Lombardy between the French and the Venetians. The real

The Battle of Novara, 1513

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm This week, “German Michael” staged another of his renaissance games. it was billed as an ultimate “big fat battle”, with 64 figure pike blocks. Unfortunately nobody told the Swiss, who turned up with regular-sized 32 man ones. Still, it looked good, especially Michael’s big French and Landsknecht units.

The Battle of Florence, 1528

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm About once a month we play an Italian Wars game, under the watchful eye of “German Michael”. Each time our armies seem to be a little bigger, so this month, Michael decided to lay on a long 12 x 4 foot table, with absolutely no scenery, apart from

The Clash on the River Sprio, Lombardy, 1510

The Italian Wars – Pike & Shotte, 28mm. When is a game too big? When there’s so much lead on the table that three-quarters of the troops on each side don’t even get into action. That was the case here – hence me calling it a “clash” rather than a “battle”. The other problem is

The Battle of Amalfitana, 1516

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm This fictitious scrap was dreamed up by or club’s Renaissance enthusiast Michael Schneider. the figures came from his collection, backed up by those of Donald Adamson, plus my own fledgling Venetian “battle”.  The game was played on an 8 x 6 foot table, with a river running down

The Battle of Cernigola, 1503

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm Michael Schneider is our club’s true Renaissance man. Rather, he’s the one with most of the lead, and keep staging games. Donald has quite a few figures too, and recently I’ve got in on the act by starting a small Venetian army. Anyway, Michael organised this game, which

The Battle of Garigliano, 1503

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm These days, when we don’t know what else to play at the club, my German friend Michael Schneider suggests a Renaissance game. We’ve played a few of these now, and they always look good, despite Michael’s minimalist approach to scenery. He likes battlefields stripped of ancillary detail –

The Battle of Pavia, 1525

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte, 28mm We called this game Pavia because it was loosely based on the Battle of Pavia, but really it should be Pavia Light, as  only the general proportions of troops and dispositions were the same as in the real battle. This game had no walled city, no French siegeworks

The Battle of Fornovo, 1495

The Italian Wars, Pike & Shotte,  28mm I’ve always been rather fond of the Italian Wars – in fact it was the subject of one of my earliest Osprey books – Pavia 1525, published way back in 1996. It’s still one of my favourite Ospreys, largely because it redefined what happened during the battle –

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