Sunday, February 20, 2011

Kolin 1757 again

Jim's Prussians v. Mark's Austrians

This time I set up a bigger table (10x6) to allow us to start earlier in the day with the troops facing each other on the Austrian left.  Fred has the option of making a flank march as he did, or making a direct assault.

The Prussians deployed first restricted to their corner of the table.  The Austrians deployed second - anywhere in their half of the table, plus Grenz allowed in cover anywhere outside the Prussian area.  The Prussians had first turn.  The Austrians were not allowed the Initial Orders rule.  Pic 1 is the initial deployment from behind Austrian left.

The Prussians immediately began to wheel their army left and march down the Kaiserstrasse as Fred did, Hussars in front.  The Austrians reacted by beginning to redeploy to their right, but also they sent their left wing forward in a spoiling attack.  This was met by the prussian right wing cavalry.  See Pic 2.

The vanguard of the Prussian left pushed the Grenz out of the way and turned right beyond the tree line to be met with another Austrian counterattack by their right wing cavalry.  But the Prussian centre was halted before the tree line. 
The 2nd Grenadier division were turned around and sent back to attack the Austrian left. The centre cavalry turned right & advanced towards the Austrian centre followed by a large infantry division in columns.  See pic 4.

The Austrians had succeded in redeploying, but their spoiling attacks were rapidly turning into disasters.  On their right, their Hussars were beaten without loss by their opposite numbers in  a fair fight.  On their left the cavalry was beaten by the Prussian counterattack and as a result the advancing infantry there was outflanked and rolled up.

The Austrian right was secure, with infantry in place to face off the Prussian Hussars.  But their left was outflanked - Grenadiers were marching inexorably for the end of the line as the Prussian cavalry regrouped beyond the flank.  In the centre a mass of veteran line infantry columns surged up the hill supported by grenadiers on their left and cavary on the right.  The Austrian centre broke under the concentrated attack and the their position was totally compromised.  Time for sauve qui peut.

The Austrians did a good job or redeploying.  The rules didn't make it easy for them,  but they acheived historical results on the ridge.

The Prussian plan was to march left until the Austrians were committed to redeployment, then turn and attack their centre & left, rather than push on and try and turn their right.  This succeeded beyond their hopes due to an extrordinary performance by the Prussian cavalry.  Whereas on the day, Fred was let down badly by his cavalry, today they won every fight, decisively winning the cavalry actions on both flanks.  The losses on the flanks robbed the Austrian centre of reserves to contain the breakthough by the concentrated infantry attack on the centre.  At the time we finished, the Austrians had 15 units routed compared to the Prussian's one (dragoons destroyed by artillery in the centre).

This was a much more interesting scenario than how we did it a couple of weeks ago.  We got a credible result, thoguh far different from the original.  The failure of the Prussian cavalry was widely blamed for the original fisasco, this game showed what might have happened if they had performed better.

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