Saturday, 22 August 2015

Monthly review 1 basic Impetus and Grandeur bases

first of my hopefully monthly reviews this time my basic impetus and Peninsula wars for Grandeur wargame


Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Waterloo mini muster the campaign summery

Well it's been six months of campaigning with many small and large actions. we've seen some Allied success against staggering odds, we've seen the French Juggernaut, that is the 'Army of the North' fighting many battles defeating the Prussians at Lambusart and finally at Ligny forcing them, but never once braking them, to retire from the field. The Allies on there part have mainly been trying to slow the French advance in there quarter on the campaign at Frasnes and Caillou with mixed success. The French have fought both the Allies and the Prussians to a virtual standstill.

the French on the march

an earlier battle 

The final campaign dice have been rolled, the results are in and its not looking good for the Allies,  to be honest the dice have not been kind to the Allies through out the campaign, but that's wargaming as they say.

It's the 18 June and the Allies under Wellington find themselves on the ridge, around the Waterloo area. The 1st Guards division, 2nd, 3rd , 5th and 6th British division's . 2nd and 3rd Netherland division's with most of the cavalry  are present in varying states of damage, from battered, to all most no existent. ( its been a hard campaign )ADCs have been dispatched to out lying units to draw in what is left.
The 4th British infantry divisions are on rout from  Hal,  hoping to arrive in time.
The Prussian's are already fighting the French lust south of Wavre in the East. Wellington can hear the cannon from his command position at Waterloo. With little hope of the Prussian's coming to save the day Wellington is faced with a dilemma.

Dose he hold the strong defensive position of Waterloo and hope for the best, he has faced the French before many times and won, but never against Napoleon himself.

Dose he abandon Brussels to the French and retreat east and link up with the Prussian's or west and head for the coast and Britain.

The dice are rolled both players and umpire hold there breath, and fate slaps the allies clearly in the face again.

East it will be, with the sound of guns and thunder ringing in there ears, the Allies are on the move again.
The brigades of Sir Charles Colville's 4th infantrys division freshly arrived from Hal, are to hold the main roads to Wavre( strangely the very roads the Prussian's marched down in the historical battle ).

The French with Nay leading the advance towards Mont St Jean with the VI corps arrive during the night of the 18th, to find most of the allies withdrawn from the area he can see Allied troops to the east of the position around  
not 6mm but 20mm French march through Plancenoit

He immediately sends word to Napoleon that Wellington is retreating, and orders the 19th and 20th brigades of VI corps to advance thought Plancenoit to engage the Allies around Smohain area.

Wellington and the Allies moved rapidly east wards and arrived ( in a strange quark of fate to help the Prussian's defeat the French in there hard 2 day battle. ( all be it the French were out numbered 3 to 1 when the Allies arrive)

Napoleon entered Brussels 2 days later bringing our Waterloo mini muster to an end.
The campaign threw up lots of what if's, and strange twists of fate. leaving the players and umpire scratching there heads. The Prussian's and Allies are know in support, and there is the question of 25'000 Prussian's under Klest.  210'000 Austrians under Schwarzenberg and 200'000 Russians under Barclay de Tolly that are on rout, all be it slowly. So can Napoleon do it again, Can the Allies and Prussian's go on the offencive and defeat the French. Will Napoleon fight on or will be negotiate for peace ( being in a stronger position than last time).
I leave it to the reader to decide.
the Austrians are coming again 20mm miniatures 

I would like to thank all those involved in the campaign it has been a great experience bringing the Waterloo campaign to life ( strangely not actually fighting the battle itself which just shows how much real history is, and in the words of Wellington himself. Such a close run thing).

we could not resist one last battle so we are going to fight the action around Smohain between the allies under Colville  and the French under Nay.
The battle report to follow in the last post of the Waterloo mini muster.

more unstoppable French 
Till next time

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Picton makes a stand at Caillou part 2 battle report

This post comes with a health warning :
it's a big one

We last left the two armies moving into position. The Allies had taken the ridge line and the village of Caillou. There job is to hold this area for as long as possible, or at least for 10 turns. This will give Wellington the time he needs to consolidate his forces that are available to him around Waterloo.

The French commanders job is to push the allies of the ridge and open the main line of the French armies advance to Mont-Saint-Jean, if this happens then Wellington will be caught on the hop, 'Again'.

Further to the east the Prussian's are licking there wounds after the battle of Ligny. After this battle the campaign dice can be rolled, to see if history will repeat it's self or, will the Prussian's withdraw further east. will the French advance be stalled long another so they find the allies waiting for them, maybe the Prussian's will be at Waterloo with the allies, or will the allies withdraw further north. all shall be reviled in the next Waterloo mini muster post.

For know Picton and the Allies fate awaits.

The Allies position at the start of turn 1

The French lead battalions and the cavalry brigades on the road to Caillou start of turn 1

The view from the village of Caillou. The 28th hold the village columns of French can be seen on the road. The 95th rifles can be seen in the hedge line on the left

I going to cover the command, movement and combat phases for game turn 1 so you can see what is going on in the rest of the game. 
Each side roll 1 D6 per Brigade commander (BC) plus 1 D6 for the high command base. 
The dice scores on these dice rolls will correspond to the ARs (activation ratings) of the brigade commanders in that army. 

In our game the French player has 6 (BCs) but for game turn 1 he only has 3 of them on the table plus the command base so he rolls 4 D6 
score is : 6,2,2,1

The Allies player has 5 (BCs) plus 1 D6 for his command base, he has all his brigades present at the start of the game so he rolls all 6  D6
score is : 6,5,4,3,3,1

Both side roll there command dice for the command phase, at the same time, and the dice are put to one side so both players can see the results. A player can only activate his brigades if the corresponding dice roll is achieved e.g if he has a (AR) brigade command of 3 he has to roll a 3 on one of the dice. this will mean in the next phase Movement he will be able to activate/move this brigade.
All brigades move in sequence both sides all AR2 brigades will always move before a AR3 brigades and so on. 
If a 1 or 6 is rolled by any of the D6 dice the command base can use this dice roll, to either move his command base, or to increase or decrease the one of the D6 activation dice score by 1.
A cautious command base can only use one D6 score of 1 or 6
A aggressive command base can use as many D6 1 or 6 scores that are rolled.

Back to our game and as you can see the French player has rolled his 4 D6 he will use the 2 to activate Bauduin's brigade (AR2) and the 1 he will use for his command base to move, and the 6 to change the other 2 score to a 3 to activate Huber's brigade of chasseurs on his right.

The Allies player will use his 6 score to change his 3 score to a 2, so he can activate his 6 Coy's of 95th rifles he is going to move 3 of the bases to the farm. ( all coy;s are classed as independent and have a AR2 rating). use the 1 score to change the 3 for a 2 to activate the artillery. Again none attached artillery are classed as AR2. He will also use his 4 score to activate the cavalry brigade under Merlen.

The French movement for turn 1 note the direction markers and the activation dice. The numbers on the dice show what order the brigades move in.

The Allies with there direction markers and activation dice. in the game all AR2 brigades move from both sides then AR3 and so on.

After movement comes fire and melee again all actions are done in sequence AR2 then AR3 for both sides. In turn 1 only the Allies fire with there activated artillery batteries.

Dice rolls  French  5,3,3,1
                  Allies   6,5,5,2,2,1
Allies 95th move over to the farm AR2
Allies artillery fire on the French  infantry on the road and the cavalry  AR2
French Bauduin's brigade advance AR2
French Humber's cavalry continue to advance AR3 

Bauduin's brigade move up both roads under cannon fire from the ridge line 

Dice rolls  French  6,4,2,2
                  Allies   6,5,4,2,1,1
Allies 95th move into the farm AR2
French the lead battalions of the 1st and 2nd light form coy's to skirmish with the 95th in the farm and hedge line AR2
French cavalry on his left  advances AR3
Allies the Dutch / Belgian cavalry brigade advance AR4

French Soy's brigade part of the 6th division appear on the road.

once a brigade is in combat or firing, they don't have to be ordered to continue to fight they will automatically continue. you do have to use activations to change formations or move elements of a brigade in combat.
A fire fight erupts between the 95th rifles in the farm and the 2nd light infantry 

A similar fight starts between the 95th rifles and the 1st light infantry for the hedge line

Soy,s brigades appearing on the road 

Dice rolls  French   6,6,5,3,2
                  Allies    5,5,4,4,,3,2
French Bauduin's brigade form 2 more coy's to help with the skirmish line against the 95th AR2
Allies artillery continues to fire on the advancing French infantry only as the cavalry are out of sight AR2
French Humber's cavalry advance on the Dutch/ Belgian  cavalry AR3
Allies the Dutch/Belgian cavalry brigade under Merlen moves down the valley AR4

The 95th rifles are coming under pressure as 2 battalions assault the farm. Moment's later they are driven back from the farm, they still hold the hedge line 

Dice rolls  French  3,3,2,1,1
                Allies    5,5,4,4,3,2
French Soy's brigade moves up the valley AR2
French Bauduin's brigade reforms its columns AR2
French Humber's cavalry make contact AR3 ( in this game both sides can take casualties all combat is simultaneous )
One of Bauduin's battalions starts to withdraw ( it has reached its withdraw point on its chart, and must withdraw).

The cavalry make contact in the valley 
With the 95th rifles driven from the hedge line the French brigades start to move up to the ridge 

Dice rolls  French  6,4,4,2,2,3
                Allies    6,5,5,3,3,1
French Bauduin,s and Soy,s brigades advance AR2
Allies the artillery continue to fire on the advancing French infantry AR2
The Allies cavalry are being pushed back.
The Allies guns are puling back as the French assault on the ridge line close in.
Husson,s and Campi,s brigades of the 5th division appear on the road.
French columns advance on the enemy 
The Dutch / Belgian 's are hanging in there
As the final French brigades reach the road the Allies commander sees just what he is up against

Dice rolls  French  6,6,5,4,3,3,2
                  Allies     6,5,5,4,4,2
French both Bauduin,s and Soy's brigades reach the ridge AR2
Allies Pack's brigade open fire on the French AR2
Allies  Vincke's brigade open fire on the French AR4

The allies cavalry are pushed back again they are almost broken but are hanging on
The French infantry receive heave casualties as they reach the crest of the ridge, the allies are also taking casualties.

It becomes apparent to the allies commander, that the French are concentrating all there efforts on the ridge and are screening the village.

Bauduin's brigade advance into a hail of lead 
A general view of the battlefield

Dice rolls  French  6,6,4,3,3,2,2
                Allies    6,4,3,3,2,1,
All the French but Husson's  brigade advances AR2 then AR3
Allies Pack's brigade fires on the French AR2
Allies Vincke's brigade fires on the French AR4

On the ridge the first French assault of Bauduin's brigade is starting to waver
Caillou is holding on as the French are at the walls
The Dutch/ Belgians cavalry are finally driven back

The Dutch/ Belgian cavalry withdraw through the woods

The fighting around the walls of Caillou 

Dice rolls    French  6,6,4,2,2,2,1
                  Allies     6,5,3,2,2,1
French Soy's brigade move up to the ridge AR2
French Huber's brigade advance on the Allies flank AR3
Allies Vincke's brigade forms square

With Soy's brigade advancing Bauduin's battered battalions are about to withdraw

A wall of French columns  a view from the Allies ridge 
The 1st 44th and the 92nd take the brunt of the assault 

Dice rolls     French  6,5,4,4,3,2,2
                   Allies    5,5,3,3,2,2
French Soy's brigade moves up to the ridge AR2
Allies Pack's brigade draw back a little AR2
The Allies left in crises can they hold 

yet more French advance on the beleaguered Allies
A general view of the battle at the end of game turn 10

With both side holding parts of the ridge, we looked at the casualties suffered to see if the Allies could hold on to the ridge. Most of the British line battalions were down to 60% or worse.
The 32nd and the 79th line were down to 58% and 45% and were almost about to withdraw. The Hanoverian Landwehr were almost on the withdraw point on there charts. and coming under pressure from both infantry and cavalry it won't be long before the Allies left broke.
Bauduin's brigade was more or less lost if Soy's brigade did not win the ridge it was only a question of time as both Husson's and Campi's brigade were there to finish the job.
All in all a win for the French.

The campaign dice can know be rolled, but i think the Allies under Picton will receive a bonus for shear doggedness.

till next time


Wednesday, 5 August 2015

The rules with no name

I thought i would post some pictures of a battle we played at the weekend, at mine.  The rules are still in the play testing stage so we tried them out with a small action. French v British 1813 ish some were in southern France. We kept it to just an infantry battle to test the main game mechanisms. The game was played in about 2 hours.   The French force was made up of 6 battalions of infantry and 2 coy's of skirmishers.  The British had 4 battalions a coy of light infantry 4 bases and a coy of 95th rifles again 4 bases.

A view of the main French advance 4 battalions head for the ridge line with a skirmish screen in the field ahead, 2 battalions and more skirmishers head for the village. The British can be seen in the background.

The skirmishers trade shots on the right

A close up of the skirmish line in the field French light v British light. The smoke in the background is were the 95th are engaging the other French advance.

A view of the main French advance from the French side of the field.

The main road into the village, on the French left. Here the French lights and the 95th slog it out.

With the skirmishers moving to the flanks The 2 lead battalions advance into a hail of lead.

On the left the 95th fall back as the French advance on the village.

The skirmishers fight it out on the wooded right flank.

Despite the casualties mounting the French continue there advance on the right.

The French are know taking fire to there front and flank.

The divisional commander tries to steady the faltering French right.

On the French left there advance is given a hot reception.

on the right the French try to form some sort of firing line, but casualties and morale are both starting to take effect.

The only option is to withdraw under such pressure.

The French start to withdraw in good order, the British are happy to let them. Despite it looking like a easy victory the British have taken heavy casualties 2 battalions are down to 60% and both skirmish coy's are down to 50% and 65% .

A fun game, a bit more work needs to be done on some points but all in all things went well for a first try. It also gave me a chance to show off my new terrain.
Till next time