Beau Geste lends a hand- Vive La Legion

Phil came past the other day with his Colonial skirmish collection in tow. It has various bits and pieces including French Foreign Legion, Italian Bersaglieri, French Marines, Senegalese Tirailleurs, and Marine Fusiliers. Great I thought....this calls for a game! So Phil devised a cunning scenario where the Tirailleurs and the Bersaglieri were pinned down at separate locations by hordes of Arabs/Tuareg/desert rabble/Lost Armies of Middle Earth and other assorted such trouble makers. The Legion was tasked with marching to their rescue with the Marines to extract them.
Now Phil also wrote the rules which are undoubtedly inspired by years of scholarly research, wide reading, learned debate, deep reflection, personal experience........and Hollywood.
In this game the colonial troops are able to outshoot and out fight their opponents unless the attacking rabble outnumber them approximately 500,000 to one......well that may be overstating the case but the irregulars do have a tough time!

The Italians face their first attack

The game started with the Senegalese  (under Capitaine Le Blanc) holding onto the oasis in the middle of the area of conflict (AKA...the table) and the Italians commanded by Capitano Pecorino  at one end fending off waves of attackers. With pressure building on the Italians many of the attackers left the fighting in the center of the table to help put further pressure on the Italians. These were caught between the Senegalese and a small group of arriving French Marines led by Capitaine Deeldoo who dispersed them with some well aimed volleys and some dirty but efficient bayonet work. That didn't help the Italians, as they were outnumberred 15 to one at one stage and the Foreign Legion also arrived to help out.....but  on the wrong side of the table. The Legion, under their famous Colonel Bizarre, was forced to go into square when small groups of natives started sniping at them in preparation for a rush. The Legion duly dispersed the aformentioned bad guys but they were too far away to help the beleagured Italians. Fortunately the Marine Fusiliers with their indefatigable Capitaine Piste arrived to lend a bayonet or two to the Italians....who were now all dead!

The early clash.....the Senegalese in the Oasis

At days end there were four dead from the Legion, three Senegalese, six French Marines and two Fusilier Marines....and all the hard fighting Italians (ten).

And the poor hapless natives(me)?.....about two hundred and fifty.......ahh yes, the Hollywood Beau Geste time Phil it will be a game where we are more evenly matched...the Wild West.....with John Wayne and a company of the 7th Cavalry......against the ENTIRE Sioux, Apache Arapahoe and Blackfoot nations. Looking forward to where was that book on Little Big Horn?

What is it about this guy that reminds me of Lawrence of Arabia?

The Senegalese in the Oasis

Roving warbands

Encouraging the troops!

The Italians beat off the first of MANY attacks

The Original Italian position at the beginning of the game

The Marines show the enemy the bayonet!

The Legion column arrives to help out....on the far end of the table...too far to help the Italians

The advancing column!

The Legion deploys!


The Legion surrounded

The Marine Fusiliers who would fight off several attacks then go to the assistance of the Italians.....who had already been wiped out.

The Italians to the right of the building and the Fusilier Marines to the left

The French Marines hold their line

Capitano Pecorino and his men fight to the death.

The last of the Italians are overrun.


  1. Beautiful! The terrain, the minis, and the flags, are really impressive!

  2. What a terrific escapade. Love the diverse selection of colonial troops. I've can't remember seeing a "Legion" battle than didn't end with the FFL running out of ammunition, fixing bayonets and dying to a man! Legendary John. Aye, Rusty

    1. Thanks Rusty! Yes it was a very mixed bunch.....and I am sure that the surviving Legionaires were very upset that they didn't get the opportunity to 'do a Camerone'!

  3. Thanks Al- fun to play...and I think Phil enjoys creating scenarios that are far from straight forward!