Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Napoleonic:War & Peace

Russians: Chris, Nick & Steve.  3 infnatry brigades of 6 inf & 1 art + 1 cav brigade of 2 cuirassiers & 2 dragoons.  Command 7.
French: Jim, Renfrey & Mike.  3 infantry brigades of 4 line, 1 legere & 1 art + 1 cav div of 2 cuirassier & 2 hussar.

The French are on the left in this pic.  Mike v. Steve on this flank.  Renfrey v. Nick in the centre & Jim v. Chris on the far flank.
The French attacked on their left holding their outnumbered right back. 
The French got the worst of the cavalry clash & fell back as their infantry charged the hill left of centre.
Due to poor command the Russians were unable to exploit their initial success in the cavalry fight & legere & artillery in & behind the house started whittling them down as the French cavalry tried to rally.
The Russian cavalry continue to be worn down by French fire as the infantry fight rages around the farm & in the wood. Renfey is adding some support on the right of Jim's infantry brigade.
The Russian right has broken - both infantry & cavalry.  They have lost 2 out of 4 brigades while the enemy have lost none, so the Russians fail their army army break test.  Steve's half of the Russian army can withdraw with minimal casualties.

Friday, November 09, 2018

Zama at Black Hills

Chris commanded the Carthaginians (far side of the table) & Jim the Romans.  Peter set up the battle close to the original deployment except Hannibal kept his elephants in the rear
The Romans advanced with their cavalry going ahead while the light troops slimished in the cetre.
The light infantry have been withdrawn & the Principes have attacked witht heir numidian allies covering the overlap on their right.   The Triari are being shifted to the left. The Punic 2nd line has shifted sideways to cover the overlap of their front line.  The cavalry have engaged on each flank.
The Numidian infantry has broken on the Roman right, but the pricipes are getting the upper hand against the Punic 1st line.   The Punic heavy cavalry has broken & the Numidians have pursued.  The On the Roman left, the Triari are advancing & both sides have shifted their light infantry there.  The light cavalry fight on the left is still indecisive. 
The Numdian heavy cavalry has rallied, but cannot approach the elephants, which are doing their job of protecting the rear of the Punic foot.  The Principes have broken the Punic 1st line & rallied back.  The Hastasi have now charged the Celts in the Punic 2nd line while the Triari have engaged the Punic veterans of their 3rd line.  When the Celts broke the Carthaginians failed their army morale test.  Once again Scipio has won.

Peter's Strategos rules are lumpier & less flamboyant than Hail Whoever, but the game flows well & provides an interesting bit of variety.

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Bolt Action

Steve & Rob wanted some BA practice & rules revision for the upcoming tourney at Kingston.
Rob's Panzers took on Mike's US armour (1250 pts).  The tone was set on turn 1 when Mike threw 3 1's  in succession firing at the exposed MkIII.  The Mk IV's moved up & the table was on littered with burning Shermans.  A big win for the Germans.
At the other end of the table Steve's Germans made mincemeat of Chris' Ivans in a 1,250 pt infantry game.

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Bolt Action WWI

Bolt Action with some house rules for WWI.
Scenario 7: Envelopment, with some modifications.
Chris' British defended with half units on table in improvised defences.
Jim's Germans attacked with all units in the first wave. 
Both sides were allowed more artillery with 2 medium batteries off table.
The attackers were allowed 2 barrages & 1 tank.
The Germans made their main attack on their left where a ridge gave some cover to the start of their advance. 

The first German infantry squad to go over the ridge was blown away so the Germans paused  the advance while they did some more softening up.
The Germans resume their advance.
The German's secondary attack on the right has been broken by Brits counter attacking out of their trench. 
The Germans' main attack is now doing well.
The British have taken out the tank with mortar fire, but too late to stop it breaking through the line. 

The game ended after turn 6.  The Brits had destroyed 5 units giving them 10 VPs.  The Germans had destroyed 6 units & got 3 units into the enemy deployment zone so have 12 VPs.  The attackers have won though at great cost to both sides.  So WWI.

The balance of the scenario seemed pretty good.  There were times when it looked like the Brits were on top & vice versa.  If they'd got the tank just one turn sooner it could have been very different.

Napoleonics at Molesworth

Dave Hay invited me to join him in a visit to a neighbour he has discovered with an interest in wargames & space for a big table.  Dave & Stewart commanded the Brits (on RHS in pics), Jim commanded the French.  Both sides had 3 infantry brigades & a cavalry brigade.  Two infantry brigades each were on the table at the start with the other brigades coming on as reserves along the road using the FOW reserve rule.
The French were fortunate to get their infantry reserve on turn 1 & their cavalry on turn 2. 
The French saw the opportunity to destroy the enemy's right before their reserves could arrive & advanced their left as fast as the command dice would allow. 
The Brtish reserves came on turns 3 & 4 as the French cavalry advanced in the centre to prevent the Brits supporting their right & massed infantry to attack on their left.  However the left flank infantry brigade blundered backwards instead of attacking giving the British right a reprieve while their cavalry also blundered into charging forward.  Half the cavalry charged a square on the left of the Brit's right & actually broke it by a combination of hot dice & previous casualties to artillery, then rallied back.  The other half charged the head of the British cavalry column & bounced off.

The French have renewed their attack on the Brit right with foot & horse as the British left has become a confused mess around the village as their brigades intermingle.
The Brit right is on the brink of breaking but is hanging on making a fighting withdrawal.  The Brit cavalry has driven their French cavalry back behind their infantry.   The Brit left is finally getting itself sorted out.
The British left fank infantry has finally moved up to attack but their right has finally broken.
The British attack on their left faltered against the French defensive line of artillery & infantry & they have fallen back.  The French left has reorganised to turn on the British right flank.  But night fall is approaching & both sides conceed that there isn't enough time left for a decisive result.

The British made a serious error in deployment in leaving a brigade out to dry on the right when their reserves were going to come on their left.  The British reserve's deployment was also hampered by being behind their left flank brigade while the French had left a gap in their centre for their reserves to slot into.  The French saw the opportunity, but blunder dice & stubborn defence by the Black Watch delayed the defeat of the British right long enough to rob them of time to gain an over-all victory. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Maharahah Trophy Battle from 1996

I dug into the archives to preprise a battle from our Maharajah Trophy competition of 1996 between Mark's Seleucids & Steve's Carthaginians.  In those days the battle reports were hand written with a steam photo added later.
In 1996 the battle was fought with our house rules of the day Marathon to Mafeking.  In our refight we used Hail Caesar with the OOB's converted to HC types.

 Mark commanded his infantry centre with Chris with his cavalry on the left & John on his right. 
 Steve had Jim with his right flank cavalry & Mike with his left flank cavalry.
Back in 1996 the hair was a different colour, but the umpire's outfit was the same.
The Seleucids are advancing in echelon their right forward from the far side of the table.  The Carthos are trying to advance on a uniform front. 
Battle commenced with some cavalry skirmishing on the far flank, then the Celts & Galacians charged eanch other in the centre.  Both sides held their cavalry back on the near flank.
 The Celts & Galacians both won one & lost one.
On the far flank: Although the Cartho cavalry did well initially, the Greeks reorganised & have now gained the upper hand.
The phalanx has locked onto the citizen spearmen in the centre.
The Thracians have sent one unit forward to attack the elephants & turned the other to the right to support the Galacians against the Scutari.
A unit of cataphracts has also been sent right to support the Galatians.
The cavalry on the near flank have finally got into the action.
The cavalry on this flank has split up into 4 separate action with the Carthos getting the upper hand.
On the far flank the Cartho cavalry is hanging on.
But in the centre the companions have charged the flank of the citizen spearmen & rolled up their infantry line from the left & Thracians have doen the same from their right.  Both Cartho infantry divisions have broken.  No Seleucid divisions have broken, so the Cartho's fail army morale & the 1996 result has been repeated.

It seems that Mark cannot reach as far across the table as he could in 1996. 



Monday, October 29, 2018

Musket Action: French & Indian Wars

Jim's French v. Chris' British
The two bridges & the two house are objectives.
Boths sides have regular infantry battalion with various supports.  The Brits have artillery, cavalry & some colonial regulars & woodsmen.  The French had some Canadian militia & Indians.
The game started with a deployment turn with units being put down up to 18" from own baseline.  The French are on the far side.
Both sides advance strong forces in the centre to seize half the village. 
The French have been losing casualties but have pushed on over the creek & now have their grenadiers poised to assault to British held house. A bunch of Indians are hodding the French line between the bridges.  The British cavalry have driven back the Indians on the French left.
The French grenadiers have taken the house so the French now have 3 of the 4 objectives.  But the British are pushing around both flanks.

The Fench have lost many more casualties than the British & their right has been rolled up, but they have held onto the objectives at the and of turn 7 to win.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

English Civil War

I dug into the archives & set up a scenario "Gloucester" from an English Civil War campaign we fought in 1996.
Back then we were using 15mm figs & our house rules of the time  Marathon to Mafeking.
Now we are using 28mm & Hail Cromwell, our Hail Caesar based ECW rules.  The obvious difference is the reduction in room to move.
Both sides have 2 cavalry & 4 infantry brigades.
Parliament deployed first on the far side in a good defensive position,  The Royalists had the advantage of deploying second to balance Parliament's terrain advanatage.
Parliament have deployed with cavalry on each wing. The Royalists have put all their cavalry on their left wing.
The Royalists advance generally, but with their cavalry ahead on their left.
The 2 Cavalier brigades are separated by very different command dice & Jim's Roundheads try to take advantage by counterattacking Steve's lead brigade.
Parliament have noticed that the Royalists have weighted their flanks & Mitch is counterattacking in the centre.
The Roundhead cavalry attack was beaten back with some losses, but Rupert is getting ready to renew his attack as his 2nd brigade comes up.
On the other flank Mike's Roundheads have advanced to hold the creek line & is attacking Chris over the bridge.
Rupert has broken the Roundhead cavalry but have recoiled back from the line of infantry holding the creek line.  On the other side of the line of trees Parliamentary infnatry are attacking. 
On the far flank, Mike's Roundheads have thought better of firing pistols over the creek at musketeers & his attack over the bridge has been beaten off.   So he has fallen back.  In the centre Mitch is driving the Royalist center back.  
The Royalist centre has collapsed, but Rupert has pulled out from the left & is galloping to the rescue.
Chris has lost 2 infantry brigades in the centre, but Mitch's attack has been hampered by poor command dice slowing the advance of his reserve infantry to exploit the advantage.
Mitch's advance has been stopped by a counterattack by Royalist pikemen from their right flank & the timely arrival of Rupert's Cavaliers. 
At our 10pm nightfall, Parliament have lost 1 brigade (right flank cavalry) & the King has lost 2 infantry brigades in the centre.  Both sides had 6 brigades & needed to lose 3 to fail their Army Break Test.  So the result is a draw.

In 1996, Peter Moy's Parliamentarians also counterattacked in the centre, but they were defeated. This time Parliament's counterattack in the centre broke through, but their hopes of victory was frustrated by poor command dice for their reserve & Rupert's uncharacteristic move to the rescue.