Move 5. (Or, "I didn’t spend all that time painting those bloody Light Dragoons for them to rout so quickly!")
Things are hotting up now. Once again the French have seized the initiative and move first. Grouchy rolls a poor 2 for CP’s and adds +2 as he’s rated average. He must decide priorities.
The battery of 8lb guns is ordered to open fire (1CP) They hit the Light Dragoons in the field and cause 1 casualty. The LD’s test morale and become SHAKEN they must test again during the morale phase to attempt to rally.
Brigade B are ordered to advance further through the village and to skirmish with the British Light infantry brigade. (1CP).
Brigade C continue to support them and advance behind them (1CP).
Brigade D also advance.(1CP)
No further CP’s available this move.
The skirmish action results in the French Brigade B suffering 1 casualty. (The British have superior skirmish rating and the French are disordered (BUA). No loss to the British Rifles. The French brigade make morale test Ok.
British move. Picton rolls 4 +2 for 6 CP’s. At this moment a rather dashing ADC in Hussar uniform popularly known as ‘Stryker’ gallops up and hands him a despatch reminding him to watch the British left flank brigades and to form square. A glance through his glass and he orders both units to do so immediately (3 CP’s as one moves half move AND changes formation). But first the foot battery opens fire on the French Hussars, falling short and causing no casualties on the stationary cavalry target. (1CP).
The rifles are in a tricky situation. Having beaten back the French skirmishers they are unable to engage in a firefight as the French are within the shelter of the BUA and they cannot charge into combat as they are still on ‘Engage’ orders and would need to be on ‘Attack’ orders to do so.(Paul, please come in and correct me if I am wrong here? I wanted to order a firefight but “only against troops in the open”. Could I initiate a second round of ‘skirmish’ combat at this point? I’m not sure there would be much point?) Picton decides to let the Rifles rest with the intention of ordering them to storm into the village next move once he’s taken more time to read the rules!!) It’s a test game after all.
Morale test time:
The Light Dragoons test to rally from ‘SHAKEN’ and fail the test! Picton has left them unsupported and isolated. They turn and run from the French artillery fire in ROUT. Luckily the two British brigades that they pass within 4” make morale and stand (phew!).
End of move 5. Photos show this stage of the battle.
(Gawd, I’ve had to sit and have a can of Ruddles as I contemplate the fate of my lovely Dragoons! I do like the unpredictability and hopefully they will rally next move as Picton gallops across to them. I have decided to place a second full Corps on the table edge now to be fed into the battle on move 6 (see pics). I threw a dice to see which move they would become active and both came up move 6. This will open things up somewhat. I will allocate them all Fire/skirmish/class values before next move. I plan to play move 6 tomorrow and will leave the small table set up until Thursday so lets see how things go. I’ll spend another hour reading through the rules again this evening to get a grip of the firefight/combat rules.). Great fun, don’t know what I’ve been doing for the last 10 years.