Nige and me gave my Russians their first run our this week and for a change newly painted troops won on their debut.
Nige had a Polish Division, a small Bavarian Division, Bavarian and Westfalian light Cavalry Brigade, C-in-C and artillery reserve, Polish cavalry
brigade. I had two small Russian Divisions, a Hussar Brigade, a Cossack Brigade, and the C-in-C and artillery reserve. The Poles were mostly C
and D with lots of elan. The Bavarians were all D. The Russians C and D, no elan, no stoicism. The Russians had a cavalry superiority which
historically is correct for 1813 as Napoleon had a marked inferiority in cavalry numbers.
The objective was to defeat the enemy and force them to retreat after losing 50% of units permanently shaken, routing, destroyed etc. I rolled as
defender and deployed up to 18" on table. Nigel deployed on his table edge. Initially only one blind per side was on table with others needing to
score a 5 or 6 to arrive successfully the turn after the score was achieved. Nigel's stuff arrived all except one blind early on where mine arrived
We randomly rolled for commanders when they were spotted. Both sides had several Solid and though Nige got one Bold commander he had
one Poor and one Cautious/Solid. I had two Bold cavalry commanders (making opportunity charges ridiculously easy to deliver), the rest Solid.
My two units of cossacks managed to cause chaos by occupying a position on the flank of two battalions of Bavarian infantry. They were lucky
enough to have a Bold commander who eventually changed their orders successfully to 'Attack'. One of them was subsequently bounced, but
the other managed to hit and rout a Bavarian Battalion in the flank.
Nige did a classic assault. Attacked Lardau garrison with artillery causing 10% casualties and then managed to take one half of the two area
BUA in his first assault, with only one supporting battalion. Sod it.
It took me ages to get organised to get back in, and then only with a 3:1 superiority and with better class troops.
I had one more battery available than Nige but as he was advancing upon me managed to shoot the crap out of two battalions of Poles before
they could get into contact.
He started to take the ridge next to the Lardau as I withdrew but then my defence and resolve stiffened when an enemy blind arrived on my right
I also shot the crap out of the Westfalian Chevauxlegers Lancers, and bounce through hits severely weakened his Bavarian Light cavalry behind
My cossacks pinned the Bavarian flank units by threat of opportunity charges (Move, I dares ya!) When Nige held these units, and advanced with
the rest, my unspotted blind was revealed as two large units of Russian Hussars. One unit opportunity charged his limbered Bavarian artillery
leading and wiped it out without loss. The Bavarians now couldn't move at all threatened by six units of Russian mounted troops.
Spotting was difficult because of the lie of the terrain and the fact that I tried to hide my blinds behind any feature I could find. Nigel's spotting
was really poor too so he couldn't be blamed for moving willy-nilly even.
The game was interesting in that both sides had cossacks (well Krakus for the Poles - same thing) and both their commanders were Bold.
Nigel's Krakus were brigaded with a unit of six Polish Cuirassiers (albeit without the breastplate - Poles eh?). His command arrived on my flank,
behind my line of defence, in column of march, convincing me it was a dummy. It changed into semi-deployed and I then spotted it, revealing
three regiments of cavalry. OUCH. I had no troops on that side of the table but managed to form square whilst he was still semi-deployed which
minimised the threat. This threw up a really interesting clash where his Cuirassiers hit the flank of a Russian Battalion which was permanently
shaken, and then disordered, with a strength rating of one. The Curiassiers were on a strength of five and therefore outnumbered the Russians
5:1 - highly unusual situation. Obviously the Cuirassiers routed it, and even took its standard to boot, but then my Reserve Horse artillery caused
two casualties and forced them to be permanently shaken. Whew! The Krakus then caught my foot artillery on the hill in the rear though and
destroyed them. But by then it was far too late.
I attacked the Lardau and captured it back, then pushed on through it to assault the Poles on the hill, which were all but spent and hanging on
In the centre my Hussars hit the Bavarian chevauxlegers routing them and by now the Westfalian cavalry was permanently shaken. The Hussars
pushed on, and hit the unsupported Polish artillery destroying them.
By the end the writing was on the wall for the Poles and Bavarians and the Russians were in a position to run riot. What a change for newly
painted troops to win on their debut.
Lots of fun. Lots of drama and a really interesting game. Pictures of the action below. Unfortunately I had to use a very old digital camera, so
apologies for the crappy images.
Table Set Up
Lardau and The Low Ridge Occupied by Russians
Poles Capture Half of Lardau
Westfalian Chevauxlegers Lancers and Bavarian Chevauxlegers
Taking Heavy Casualties From Russian Artillery
Cossacks On the Flank!
With Bavarians looking nervous.
Polish Cuirassiers and Krakus Outflank the Russian Positions
Fortunately they are spotted whilst semi-deployed buying time for the Russians to form square
Russians Cross The River and Prepare to Assault The Centre
Russian Grodno Hussars Take The Limbered Bavarian Artillery
Then Threaten the Remaining Bavarian Infantry With Opportunity Charges
Things are looking very bleak for the Bavarians, beset by Cossacks to the flank and Russian Hussars to the fore (Move..I dares ya)
The Russians Re-take Lardau
Grodno and Soum Hussars Rout The Allied Light Cavalry and Pierce the Centre...Game Over
All figures Essex Miniatures or Old Glory, owned and painted by yours truly
Woods POLES AND BAVARIANS
Hamlet Low Hill