Thursday, 16 December 2010
Wednesday, 8 December 2010
Sunday, 5 December 2010
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.
Saturday, 4 December 2010
(Note: Move 3 ended with no firing or morale tests required. All artillery fire takes place at the opening of each move not after movement so this will be the opening of move 4)
French again win first move and Grouchy throws a 5 +2 to give him 7 Command points. He is confident that he can now press forward the attack this move.
The 8lb foot battery is within long range (medium gun 8 to 16”) and opens fire upon the Light Dragoons stationary in the field to their front. A score of 8+ on 2D6 is required to hit, no additions or subtractions apply (B class gunners). Score is 7 so no casualties. (Long range artillery fire is quite ineffective under these rules but a hit forces a morale check and 1 casualty). (1CP used to fire)
Grouchy now initiates his brigade orders:
Brigade B are in the village (marked disordered as in BUA) and move towards the far edge. (Note: is movement halved in BUA? I think yes so they get a half speed move) They are not yet classed as a ‘garrison’ as they have not yet reached the far side of the village and then spent 1 move preparing defences. However, next move will see some combat if the British reach the outskirts of the village. (1CP).
Brigade C move to edge of village in support of the above brigade and will enter next move. (1CP).
(Note: brigades can be ‘swapped’ or replaced at a cost of 3CP’s if in support within 4” – useful to replace a shaken unit for example with fresh troops in a combat situation. However, any second line brigades within 4” could also be vulnerable to artillery fire ‘bounce through’)
Brigade D who have not yet been able to advance, finally get orders to move and with a loud cheer they begin to advance towards the village (1CP).
Brigade A (largely Legere units) remain in square but shuffle forward 2” max move. (1CP).
The battery having fired are manhandled 2” forward having already fired (2CP’s).
Finally, the Hussar brigade advance and will be within range of the British battery next move. (1CP)
A total of 7 CP’s used.
British move. Picton throws 4 +2 for 6 command points. The Light infantry brigade C (represented by the 95th rifles) advance to the edge of the village and prepare to skirmish forward next move. (1CP).
Brigade A advance to edge of the field to their front and halt. They can see the French light cavalry brigade advancing in the distance. (1CP)
Brigade B who had been moving in support behind them are ordered to move to the left flank by forming into march column for speed. They are ordered to march and form on the flank of brigade A. (2 CP’s to change formation and half move).
The battery are manhandled forward 2” on the road and prepare to open fire next move. (1CP)
The cavalry are ordered to advance (½ move over rough ground) through the field.(1CP). They may be able to charge next move if French infantry move closer.
All 6 Command points have been used so the Highlander brigade D are unable to move this turn.
The 2 photos show the situation at this point, end of movement, move 4.
(Notes: I have added the ‘Fire values’ of the brigades to the OOB below as I omitted this to begin with. Basically values are A, B or C and adds or subtracts to/from firefight values, see Rule 12).
No further combat or morale so end of move 4.
Next turn should see the first combat as the British Light infantry brigade move in to contest the village under Rule 11 – infantry skirmish. Both sides cavalry are just within charge reach now too of an enemy formation. Move 5 should prove lively.
Friday, 3 December 2010
MOVE 2. French card is drawn for first move. Commander in Chief is in base contact with Grouchy the Corps commander. He throws a 4 on an average dice and adds 2 as I have designated all commanders as ‘Average’ for simplicity in this test game. He elects to change the Corps orders to ‘Engage’. The Corps commander Grouchy now throws for his CP’s. But he only throws a poor 2 and adds 2 for 4 CP’s total. This will impact upon his ability to carry out his new ‘Engage’ orders effectively. He decides to focus on his left flank and the main thrust towards the village. He orders the battery to move to the left, off the road and to unlimber (to move and unlimber costs 2 CP’s but the battery cannot fire this move). The remaining 2 CP’s are used to advance his 2 left flank brigades (A&B) towards the village. Brigade’s C&D are unable to advance as Grouchy has no CP’s left to issue orders to them at this stage. The Hussars are also left awaiting orders to advance. Very frustrating for Grouchy!
Now it’s the British move phase. Commander in Chief throws 4 and adds +2 for a total of 6 CP’s. he changes orders and issues ‘Attack’ orders to Picton, the corps commander. Picton now throws a 3 and adds 2 for a total of 5 CP’s. His brigades are in line and thus can move only 4” (8”if in column). He orders brigades A, C ( the light infantry) and D to make a full move towards the village (3CP’s). The battery are ordered to move and unlimber (2 CP’s) Brigade B are left awaiting orders as no CP’s are left to activate this unit.
No firing or morale checks required this stage.
French again draw first move. Grouchy throws a 3 +2 for his total of 5 CP’s this move. He orders his battery to open fire (1CP). Brigades B&C move towards the village to attack as per new orders (2CP’s). Brigade A, the Legere brigade, are ordered to make a half move and form square (2 CP’s) in support of the battery as the British cavalry are formed up in line in the field to their front. Brigade B actually break into the village in column. Brigade D are still left behind halted and awaiting orders. The commander is not happy and is cursing Grouchy!
(Note: I like this unpredictability. Most old style rules I used always allowed every unit to follow orders, this reminds me of Fire and Fury and its activation system).
British move now. Picton throws 5 and adds 2 for 7 CP’s. He knows he can issue orders to all of his units. He orders his cavalry to remain halted as to advance would move them into closer artillery range (No CP’s required for this?) But they are close enough to keep the French Legere brigade pinned in square. (The French battery is however within long range and will no doubt open fire this move).
Brigades C &D are ordered to advance and attack the village (2 CP’s) but they cannot move fast enough in line to enter the village this move. As the French have beaten them to it they will have to contest entry next move possibly.
Brigade A are ordered to advance in support of the battery (1CP) which are now unlimbered on the road. They battery is ordered to open fire (1CP). Brigade B are ordered to advance in support of brigade A (rear) (1 CP). Picton has 2 unused CP’s this move.
That’s it so far! Photos show end of move 2 (top pic) and end of movement phase of move 3(middle and bottom pics) . Remainder of move 3 will follow. Both sides artillery are unlimbered within range and firing will follow.
There are 2 Corps on the table for this first run through. Both Corps commanders are designated as ‘Average’. Each corps consists of the following:
4 x infantry brigades. 1 x Light cavalry brigade and 1 artillery battery.
Brigade A: skirmish= B - morale class B Fire value C
Brigade B: skirmish =C - morale class B Fire value B
Brigade C: (light infantry) skirmish=A -morale class A Fire value A
Brigade D: skirmish= C. - morale class C Fire value B
Light cavalry brigade. (Light dragoons) morale class B
Battery of medium foot artillery. B class gunners.
Brigade A: (Light infantry) skirmish = A morale class B Fire value B
Brigade B: skirmish = C – morale class C Fire value B
Brigade C: skirmish = C – morale class C Fire value C
Brigade D: skirmish = C – morale class D Fire value C
Light cavalry brigade (Hussars) morale class B.
Battery of medium foot artillery, class B gunners.
A simple (and very basic at this stage!) bare table with a central village BUA base 30cm square, surrounded by fields that reduce movement. Roads lead in to the village (no buildings yet) from both sides of the table. The objective of both sides is to take control of the village and hold it and if possible to drive back the enemy.
Both sides are under initial ‘MOVE’ orders, these must be changed by CinC as required. Cards are drawn to determine who moves first and British draw first move. The British Corps commander is average and throws a 4 on an average dice for 4 command points (CP’s) and adds +2 ‘average’ (plus 3 for ‘gifted C/O or +1 for ‘Poor’ C/O). A total of 6 command points available to him.
He chooses to make a ‘brigade move’ as all infantry are within his command radius (8”) and within 2” of each other. All 4 infantry brigades make a full move forward together for 1 CP. The cavalry move half move and deploy into line for 1CP and the artillery move forward a full move for 1 CP.
French move next: The Corps commander (my beloved ‘grouchy’ figure) is average and rolls a 3 on an average dice. So adds + 2 to give him 5 CP’s. He elects to use 1 CP to make a ‘brigade move’ by his infantry (all within 2” of each other) and 1CP to advance his artillery battery along the road. A further 1 CP sees the Hussars move slightly to the right and deploy into line.
(Note: rules state that a Corps commander “must use all of his CP’s to achieve the corps orders”. Not clear on this? Both have CP’s left over and no need to use them? Paul, could you offer any help here please?).
No firing so end of move 1. Picture shows the battle at this stage. (Note: I must now place a figure representing the overall Commander in Chief on the table as a Corps commander is unable to change Corps orders, this must be done by the Commander in Chief who must be in base to base contact with his Corps commander in order to do this. He must also roll for CP’s in order to do this. I will place each C in C figure in base contact with the Corps commanders to begin move 2 as I missed this initially).
MOVE 2. French card is drawn for first move. french Commander in Chief will now roll for CP's and then attempt to change the corps orders to 'Engage'.