Friday, 14 August 2020

Wilkinson's Campaign - Expedition Forces

Forces used by Major Wilkinson and the Arab Slavers were originally developed by Garry Chalk for In the Heart of Africa. They are fully detailed on pg. 101 of Wargames Illustrated (270). I decided to see if I could convert the forces to something more suitable for The Men Who Would be Kings. 

For Major Wilkinson I decided on a 25 point field force that is accompanied by 1 baggage unit per 8 full points (so a minimum of 3 baggage): 

- Major Wilkinson: Independent Leader, Regular (free) 
- Lt. Harris: Independent Leader, Regular (free) 
- Sikh Soldiers x 12: Regulars, Elite (7 pts) 
- Trained Askaris x 12: Irregulars, Well-armed (5 pts) 
- Trained Askaris x 12: Irregulars, Well-armed (5 pts) 
- Askari x 12: Irregulars (4 pts) 
- Tribal Infantry x 16 (3 pts) 
- Standard (1 pt) 
- Baggage Unit 1 (free) 
- Baggage Unit 2 (free) 
- Baggage Unit 3 (free) 
- Miss Jenkins: Independent Character (optional, see special rules)

Leadership values and traits should be generated as normal for Wilkinson and Harris. Both Wilkinson and Harris are attached to a unit at the beginning of each game (can be the same unit or different units). Wilkinson's leadership and trait values are used to control all units within his command range (normally 24" but can be limited by local conditions). If attached to a different unit, Harris may choose to use his own leadership and trait values to activate his unit. Units located outside of Wilkinson's command range are considered leaderless.   

At the start of the campaign Wilkinson should select objects from the following list (he can refer to the object cards if he so wishes). See special rules for encumbrance values of objects etc. 

8 x Cases of Ammunition 
8 x Army Rations
2 x Barrel of Rum
4 x Animal Forage
1 x Tents
1 x Medicine Chest
4 x Glass Beaded Necklaces
4 x Brass Wire 

Wilkinson has also been promised the support of a naval gunboat, HMS Mayfly. The gunboat is due to arrive at the Reverend Jenkin's Mission with bluejackets and supplies for the expedition. It will then accompany Wilkinson for the rest of the campaign. My MWWBKs rules for the gunboat are here. Costing the gunboat for MWWBKs is tricky since it could be extremely useful or completely useless (in scenarios with no river for example). For this campaign I therefore decided to provide HMS Mayfly for free together with 12 points of armed sailors: 

 - Sailors x 12: Regulars (6 pts) 
 - Sailors x 12: Regulars (6 pts) 
 - Gunboat (free)

If Wilkinson is resupplied by the gunboat he may freely choose to take any of the following items:

6 x Cases of Ammunition
6 x Army Rations
4 x Animal Forage
2 x Barrel of Rum
1 x Tents
1 x Medicine Chest
1 x Baggage Unit (porters)

As you can see, Wilkinson starts the campaign with a formidable force and the promise of even more firepower once he reaches the Mission. However, Wilkinson only has a finite number of men. Men lost to enemy fire (or lions!) cannot be replaced and the Major must ensure that his force isn't too depleted before it reaches the Arab Tembe. 

If Wilkinson is killed in action, he can be succeeded by Lt. Harris. If both Wilkinson and Harris are killed, the campaign is over and the Arabs will have won.