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Author Topic: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?  (Read 1057 times)

Offline Red Orc

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Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« on: June 22, 2018, 11:00:42 AM »
Right, I'm bored.

Anyone up for a Ruritania campaign along the lines of the Atlantis farago about 6 years ago?

My basic idea was that (unlike Atlantis) we'd have some factions.

The Ruritanian succession is in dispute - various claimants have arisen, Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant, supported by different factions inside Ruritania and neighbouring Powers. Austria, Germany and Russia all want a piece of Ruritania (all of it if possible), and various allies join them - France to Austria, to stop Germany; Britain to Russia, to stop Germany and France; Turkey to Germany, to stop Russia; Greece to Russia, to stop Turkey, etc... when America (either Union or Confederacy), Imperial China and Japan join the war we can see which way they jump...

Like Atlantis, any scale of action is permissible from IHMN companies to giant GASLIGHT battles to aeronef combat, naval engagements (not around the Ruritanian Sea however, that dried up 150 million years ago) or whatever else anyone feels like. Then we feed all the battle-reports into a big matrix to calculate who's won in some sort of reasonable time (unlike Atlantis!).

Does that sound reasonable and/or fun, anyone up for it?
« Last Edit: June 22, 2018, 11:12:17 AM by Red Orc »

Offline Matakakea

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2018, 05:14:20 PM »
A Ruritanian IHMN Company. I like the sound of that. Has anyone ever done one?
I'm not a mercenary. Killing's more of a hobby for me.

Offline Red Orc

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2018, 06:25:11 PM »
I started: posted some notes here - https://leadadventureforum.com/index.php?topic=62716 towards a couple of Ruritanian military companies.

These were a Line Infantry company (based on the British Rifle Company), an Äthertruppen company of the Astro-Hungarian Empire, and some mention of Ulhans and Jaegers. The Äthertruppen in particular I thought should have some 'heavies', utilising 'steampunk' technology. The main thing was, in line with the stories, that there should probably be heroic junior officers (like Fritz von Tarlenheim or Lieutenant Bernenstein from the books).

I also commented on the possibility of using the Brick Lane Commune as the basis for an Anarchist group in Strelsau - only, with the option to take pistols, as the 'People's Truth' Group in Strelsau is a bit more terroristy (bank robbery and assassination) than the Brick Lane Commune seems to be.

However, I'm definitely assuming that any IHMN company could get in on the action, as the Egyptian company might ally itself with the Ottoman Empire (allied to Germany), the French are allying themselves to Austria-Hungary, a Russian company can be part of the Tsar's intervention forces etc. Any factions pretty much can be justified.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2018, 06:27:46 PM by Red Orc »

Offline Matakakea

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2018, 04:55:48 PM »
Thanks for that Red Orc. I 've just read the previous article and blog link, and I'll check out my books tonight. I already have some ideas for figures from Westwind and Ironclad, but some size comparisons might be in order first, and if I do use the Westwind Zendarians then I really feel that a couple of them will have to have Hussar style frogging added to their jackets. It just seems to be the right thing to do  :D

Offline The_Beast

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2018, 05:14:03 PM »
You know? My short Brits and Prussians never saw paint, much more, action, for my 'stunty secret wars', but I shall try to rouse myself out of long indolence.

Breath-holding contra-indicated.

At least, there's always hope when so many locals to me start rumblings about VSF  in general, and IHMN in particular, though big GASLIGHT would still be more appropriate for those vehicles I had in mind.

Doug

Offline Red Orc

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2018, 05:26:09 PM »
Matakakea, my Ruritanians are mostly Westwind with some Ironclad, they scale pretty well. I'm devilish slow at painting but I may get some shots up soon-ish.

The_Beast, I'd love to see them painted up. I won't hold my breath, I think my Zendarians have been unpainted for about 4 years and are just now getting the attention they deserve, so I know it takes time. GASLIGHT, IHMN, FUBAR, whatever you like, it's all good.

Offline hentzau

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2018, 06:33:48 PM »
I have some Zendarians...someplace.  I just did a full game room remodel and sorted out my minis, but I don't recall finding them anywhere.  My problem (like so many others) is that I just have too many projects going on right now to think about painting up another faction.

Offline Red Orc

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2018, 06:50:08 PM »
I don't think you need to paint anyone if you don't have to - as long as you have some late Victorian troops or even civilians, it will be fine.

The idea is all the major (and some minor) powers are getting involved. Primarily, Russia, Germany and Austro-Hungary, but also their allies. The French want to stop Germany so they've allied with Austria. The Ottoman Empire is trying to stop Russia's 'pan-Slavic' drive so has allied with Germany. The British don't want Germany or France to fulfil their aims so have allied with Russia. The Greeks, to stop the Ottomans, have allied with Russia too. The Italians, to put pressure on Austria, have allied with Germany...

It doesn't really matter what factions you have - everyone is pouring troops and warmachines in to fight for their own interests. If you want to fight a battle between British and Spanish, then you could say that the British troops (allied to the Russians have invaded from the Notrh and met Spanish troops (allied to Austria) coming up from the south.

Really, the important thing is if you're interested in playing some games and trying to construct an overall narrative for them.

Offline Metternich

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2018, 04:37:56 PM »
Sounds fun.  Looking forward to seeingh this.

Offline Red Orc

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2018, 05:53:18 PM »
It will only happen if people want it to. If there are enough people who want to do a fin-de-siecle, Mitteleuropa campaign for a bit, then it'll go ahead. If not... not.

Offline Metternich

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2018, 09:26:05 PM »
As Bismarck said, a general European war would probably be started by some damned thing in the Balkans.

Offline Red Orc

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2018, 11:15:28 AM »
Well, despite TV and academics and I think even the film tending to lead people that way, Ruritania isn't "really" in the Balkans - it's near Dresden.

It's vaguely in a Bohemia-Southern Poland kinda zone. Somewhere between Dresden and Krakow, roughly.

Whatever it's exact location (if, for example, Strelsau was intended as an analogue of Prague), my assumption is Russians and their allies will be advancing from the north-east, the Prussians/Germans and allies will be advancing from the north-west, and the Austro-Hungarians and their allies will be advancing from the south.

Meanwhile, local forces will have fragmented with different units and commanders and counts and bishops and town councils and whatnot all supporting different claimants to the throne and therefore the different Powers backing those claimants - so basically anything goes. Pretty much any match-up can be made to make sense I think.

But it needs people to say they're interested or it isn't going to happen.

Offline The_Beast

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2018, 03:45:18 PM »
...
It's vaguely in a Bohemia-Southern Poland kinda zone. Somewhere between Dresden and Krakow, roughly.

Whatever it's exact location (if, for example, Strelsau was intended as an analogue of Prague), my assumption is Russians and their allies will be advancing from the north-east, the Prussians/Germans and allies will be advancing from the north-west, and the Austro-Hungarians and their allies will be advancing from the south.

Meanwhile, local forces will have fragmented with different units and commanders and counts and bishops and town councils and whatnot all supporting different claimants to the throne and therefore the different Powers backing those claimants - so basically anything goes. Pretty much any match-up can be made to make sense I think.
....

In spite of being both half German, and having a bit of history of at University eons ago (specifically, the Hohenzollern and the Habsbourg Empires), I'm still pretty vague on the area, but I was all sure it was lederhosen and schnitzel, and partly dense woods in rugged mountains, though tending more towards Baltic than Balkan in clime?

You need patience with us, products of our environments; just try Google-comparing 'Eastern Europe' and 'Central Europe.'

Quote from: Red Orc
But it needs people to say they're interested or it isn't going to happen.

You know I delight in this stuff, though lack a certain staying power. PLEASE tell me to shut it if you find I'm winding you up!

Doug

Offline Red Orc

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2018, 06:04:33 AM »
Not at all Doug!

Ruritania is a land presented as German-speaking in the books. It's also Catholic. But some of the place-names (Strelsau, Hentzau) look like they have Slavic roots. Also, among the Ruperts, Ottos and Fritzes, there are people with names that look either Slavic or may suggest something a bit more Greek-influenced; Stanislas, Ladislas, Nikolas and 'Black' Michael. I'd suggest that these names imply that Ruritania isn't as ethnically-homogeneous as it first appears. Of course, Hope is mostly concerned with the (German Catholic) aristocrats; the fact that some of the people might be Slavs (and possibly Orthodox) is not so noticeable, or important. The upper classes  seem to be German (with the possible exception of Michael - a reason he is popular with the people but not the rest of the ruling class?) but not everyone in the lower classes is necessarily as German as all that. For a point of comparison, Prague was regarded as a German-speaking city in 1895, with a Slavic hinterland.

So, yeah, a certain amount of schnitzel and lederhosen; of course, whether they call it wurst or kielbasa/klobasa (sorry, don't have the necessary characters for German or Slavic orthographies), everyone in the area eats sausage, and sauerkraut too.

Offline N.C.S.E

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Re: Return to Zenda, AKA Ruritania or Bust?
« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2018, 08:43:24 AM »
If you wanted to be really clever you could add in some of Hope's other made up lands into the mix. One that springs to mind is Kravonia from the far less well regarded Sophie of Kravonia (written many years after Prisoner of Zenda). I believe one of the Inklings (of Tolkien fame) had a good hack at it once upon a time. Kravonia does have a fair amount of ethnic tensions between the inhabitants of the big city and the hill people. It does end up getting invaded and partitioned toward the end of the book when its neighbours get tired of the shenanigans across the border.  :?