Dead Mans Gulch - the game

On Friday my Secret Wargaming friend hosted a fun game set in the Wild West. Mexicans faced off against Apaches, Scalp Hunters hunted scalps and yours truly fought valiantly to keep the peace with some lawmen.

Dead mans gulch. A ghost town which local legend had,  contained hidden gold.

Some of my Posse. Big John Wayne, Dean Martin, Blondie and a US Marshall called Rooster. A group of heroes if ever I saw one, and a group befitting their Wargamer.

The Mexicans. These were a mean group of men. Set on one thing. Loot. I will not speak harshly of their commander.....he brought some beer with him, and he therefore, can do no wrong.

The Apaches. A swift and aggressive warband. Seemingly intent on killing all others who visited the town. Mean and deadly. Quite similar to their commander, apart from the fact that he is neither mean, nor deadly. He just likes to dress as a Native American........but that’s a different story.

The Scalphunters. There were intent on grabbing as many enemy scalps as they could. And looking at my Secret Wargaming Friends shiny head.....I could see why!

We had a blast, and the day was started by a generous bacon, sausage and egg baguette, washed down by enough tea to sink a battleship. 

What SWF lacks in hair, he makes up for in hospitality.

Bravo SWF. Bravo.

I had to capture, alive, the Mexican leader. We started on opposite sides of the table. Between him and me were the Apaches and Scalp-Hunters.

It felt a bit like the Warriors trying to get back to their home-turf after the assassination of the gang leader in the 1970’s classic film ‘The Warriors’.

I sent Rooster galloping down the Main Street. The aim to be aggressive and cause a distraction amongst my foes. If lucky, I might even grab the Mexican leader by accident.

My target, brown jacket and sombrero. Sanchez.

Rooster managed to get halfway down the street before his horse, Wonder, was shot out from under him by the dastardly leader of the Apaches.

Wonder - moments before he was shot.

The whole room paused. Shocked at this turn of events. Each of the other players (apart from the Apache player) openly mourned this sad loss. 

In fact, even the Apaches looked upon their cruel leader with disdain.

Luckily, Rooster survived. 

A small mercy. 

I watched as the leader of the Mexicans wiped a tear from his eye.

Dean Martin looks on in despair.

The Apaches were aggressive and deadly in the opening exchanges. They had killed the unarmed, and much loved horse Wonder, and were now charging towards the Scalp Hunters.

The Scalp Huntets found themselves under a frenzied attack by hatchet armed braves.

My SWF quickly found his casualties mounting. 

A fun part of the game was the placing of chocolate gold coins as loot. They were hidden in the buildings. The more coins you had. The better chance of being declared the winner.

The others had already found coins. I hadn’t. But I did locate some dynamite. This would come in useful later on.

The Apache sharp shooter spotted Dean Martin and shot him. He lay motionless on the floor in a pool of blood.

Very quickly I had lost a key hero of my posse. It was at this point I revised my plan. I noted that there was a large stash of gold in the Sheriffs office. The Apache had found it, but it was locked in a cell and you needed dynamite to get access.

I had dynamite. I just needed access to the sheriffs office. But the Apache player had taken up residence there.

I formed my posse and they took refuge in a store opposite the Sheriffs office. I was confident my boys would outgun them.

Big John, Mississippi and Stumpy take up position. Soon bullets were raining revenge on the Apaches opposite.

Meanwhile the Apaches claimed another Scalp-Hunter.

At this stage things were looking decidedly dodgy for SWF. Attacked from the front by Apache braves, and with a group of Desperados approaching from the side. Bleak indeed.

But cometh the hour, cometh the man. The leader of his group, de Witt stood firm and claimed three kills in as many minutes.

It wasn’t long before the Mexicans and Apaches exchanged fire.

It was at this point providence helped my boys. 

The Apaches vacated the Sheriffs office. Their leader needed more men to deal with the Scalp Hunter and growing Mexican threat.

Blondie watches quietly from afar. He unnerved my Apache opponent from his mere presence.

I quickly moved into the Sheriffs office, and blew the ‘bloody door off’

I now had 13 Gold coins. 

I was in the lead.

Meanwhile a vicious three way gunfight was taking place down the road.

I knew I would struggle to capture Sanchez. It would be fool hardy to leave the office and attempt to do so. Discretion is the better part of valour..........

But then Providence smiled again. 

Sanchez ran passed the cowering and bloodied Apaches. They had hidden in a nearby hotel due to the weight of gunfire aimed in their direction.

He headed straight to the jail. Charging in with his loyal gunfighter henchman.

They were greeted by Blondie.

The below video aptly explains what happened next:

Sanchez managed to escape out the door despite being wounded.

The moment Blondie took down two of the Mexicans single handedly.

Shortly afterwards I found my hand being shaken by my opponents, each congratulating me on my victory, and on my plan. The Apache leader was speechless.

I really enjoyed the game, and wish to thank my Wargaming friends for their good humour and company throughout the day.

A special thanks for SWF who organised it all, supplied the food, tea and biscuits and ensured his guests had an excellent game in good company.


  1. Baron Munchausen could not have written it up better! And they were Tomahawks not hatchets!!!

    1. The Secret Wargamer20 February 2019 at 11:44

      Thank you for your kind words. I must dash.....I have some gold to spend ��


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