Monday, 9 February 2015

Sudan Campaign...

I have acquired a set of documents that were from one of the old wargames magazines that produced a series of articles from Peter Gilder many years ago, this depicted a Sudan Campaign, based around the Khartoum period, so I have always wanted to conduct this period in a series of campaign games.

The guys that I game with on a Monday night were willing victims of my whims, I would be playing the part of the Mahdists, and Zob was in overall command of the Anglo forces that have been dispatched to fight off the Rebellion that is forming... Jason and Colin are in command of the 1st Brigade, Paul and Colin are in charge of 2nd Brigade, Commanders have to follow commands given by Zob on the Map movement for campaign purposes, however what they do in set situations that happen to their Brigades, and on the field of battle is down to them...

The rules for battles will be the Too Fat Lardies "They Don't Like it Up Em" card driven set...

The scene is set...


A ruckus has become apparent in the Sudan, some peasant leader has declared himself the Mahdi "The expected one" and evoked a Holy War against our Allies the Egyptian's, they have sent out troops the area but it seems they have not been heard from since, this is causing a bit of a who ha in the region and the Governor in Cairo has requested that more Imperial troops be made available, gentlemen this is your chance for glory...

The Imperial forces must break the Mahdist grip in the Sudan and so stop the Holy War spreading. Each month of inactivity brings more tribes over to the Mahdi and so the number of squares on the map he controls grows.

Note: There are two grades of Mahdi influence over squares. 1/Control. Absolute control over that square, usually a garrison in a town or village within that square. 2/Influence. No Mahdist garrison within the square, but the tribes living within the square are friendly to the Mahdist cause. Imperial troops could find enemy troops within that square. Squares adjacent to the Mahdist controlled squares always are designated 'squares of influence'.

When our campaign opens the control of "the Expected One" has spread over squares 11 & 12A; 10, 11, 12B; 11 & 12C; 11 & 12D in the West; and in the East over 6F, 5, 6 & 7G; 6 & 7H; and 7I.

The Imperial forces are assumed to be in either on the Sudan-Egyptian Border or may be landed at Saukin.

A couple of things to bear in mind when planning: it takes a lot of supplies, water, fodder for camels etc. if you decide to go cross country. You are only sure of water on the camel routes.

Each square is 60miles across, and cross country can take anywhere from 5 to 9 days to cross, River movement is a lot quicker, but is limited and runs its own risks along the way, depending if you are going slow or full steam. there are also Cataracts to deal with as well. 2 Battalions may be carried by steamers and boats attached towing...

Your forces available at the moment in Egypt are:-

Gordon Highlanders
Royal Marine Light Infantry
Kings Royal Rifles
Black Watch
Royal West Kents
19th Hussars
10th Hussars
1st Battery RA
6th Battery RA
Naval Brigade with 3 machine guns

& the Egyptian Army for garrison duties...

Zob now has to decide where he wants them to deploy on the Egyptian border or landing at Saukin, or both...

There are also available in Aden and India if required, requests to the Government will be required:

Yorks and Lancs
Royal Irish Fusiliers
East Surreys
Royal Irish Lancers
17th Bengal Inf.
28th Bengal Inf.
Bengal Lancers

Or from England:
Coldstream Guards
Heavy Brigade
Duke of Cornwalls LI
Artillery Batterys

There is currently a garrison of Egyptian troops in and around Saukin, and at Khartoum with Gordon, the Governor General of the Sudan, who is currently evacuating the city and its defences, whilst trying to mediate with the Mahdi.

The date is January 1884... Gentlemen form your Brigades...

With this in mind Zob has ordered the following...

These are the orders I intend to issue to my forces around Sudan

1st Brigade in Egypt.  CiC Jason.  2ic Colin.

To CiC 1st Brigade Egypt.
Dear Sir.

You are ordered to take the following forces from Egypt-
Kings Royal Rifles.
Royal West Kents.
10th Hussars.
6th Battery Royal Art.
2 Regiments Egyptians.

To embark onto river transports and proceed up the Nile at best speed to Berber arriving not later than week 6 to rendezvous with 2nd Brigade.
You will secure Berber and garrison with your Egyptian troops.
In conjunction with 2nd Brigade you will capture & secure the Atbara Fort then proceed to secure & garrison the town of Nakheila.
There you are to await further orders.

Yours faithfully.

Major General Charles Robert Mountjoy.

2nd Brigade at Suakin.  CiC Panjo.  2iC Andy. 

To CiC 2nd Brigade at Suakin
Dear Sir.

You are ordered to take the following forces from Suakin-
Gordon Highlanders.
Black Watch.
19th Hussars.
1st Battery Royal Art.
Royal Marine Light Infantry.
Naval Brigade Machine guns.
1 Regiment Egyptians.

Leaving 1 regiment of Egyptians to garrison Suakin you are to advance via Sinkat, Trinkata & Tokar to Berber to arrive not later than week 6 to rendezvous with 1st Brigade.  During the course of this operation but secondary to it you are to engage & defeat the enemy en route to subdue the uprising in the east. 
You are to secure the town of Berber.
Supported by 1st Brigade you will capture & secure the Atbara Fort then proceed to secure the town of Nakheila.
There you are to await further orders.
So the orders are issued to the commanders and away they go...


  1. Hussar, I'm looking forward to this. The only thing you have to remember when dealing with the Fuzzy is, to quote Corporal Jones, "they don't like it up em, they don't!!"

  2. Thanks Jon, First battle has occurred, next instalment ready on the press for release...

  3. Sounds great - this is a fantastic period to game. I fought this same campaign many years ago out f Wargames World and am currently developing a set of campaign rules based on them for later in the year. Look forward to reading your instalments.

  4. Thanks Carlo, first battle played, review up very soon...
    Will be very interested in your campaign rules?